RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA — Flynas in talks with Airbus for new jet order amidst Saudi Airlines expansion.

Saudi Arabian budget carrier Flynas is reportedly in advanced negotiations with Airbus SE for a new jet purchase, according to sources privy to the discussions. This comes as Saudi airlines are expanding their operations to effectively compete with regional competitors.

Flynas, which operates an exclusively Airbus fleet, might reveal a deal with the European aircraft manufacturer as early as next week's Paris Air Show, as per the same sources who wished to remain anonymous due to the sensitive nature of the ongoing discussions. The airline had previously stated it was contemplating establishing branches in two more countries, as it aims to be the largest low-cost carrier in the Middle East.

Flynas' existing Airbus aircraft include a mix of A320neo and A321XLR units, as well as a few A330 widebody jets primarily used for the Hajj pilgrimage. While the discussions with Airbus continue, there may not necessarily be an agreement reached in the immediate future. Neither Airbus nor Flynas commented on the potential order. Flynas had announced last year that it aimed to increase its fleet to 250 aircraft.

This potential expansion is in line with Saudi Arabia's efforts to diversify its economy and establish itself as a leading global tourism destination by 2030. As a part of these efforts, the nation is significantly investing in the aviation sector. Flynas, originally started as Nas Air in 2007, is partly owned by Kingdom Holding Co., an investment firm led by Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal.