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Norwegian Boeing 737 MAX 8 (photo: Atle Straume / Norwegian)

Norwegian wants to build Stockholm hub

The first Norwegian flight on a Swedish operating license appeared at Stockholm Arlanda this morning.

Norwegian has gained an operating license in Sweden, and the company hopes that Stockholm Arlanda can become a focal point for traffic between Asia and North America, reports.

A brand new Boeing 737 MAX 8 landed at the airport this morning. With the registration SE-RTA, it had completed a flight from Boeing Field King County International Airport – the first aircraft to be registered on a new AOC for Norwegian Air Sweden.

Norwegian submitted the application to the Swedish Transport Agency in mid-July, and now things have fallen in place to the benefit of Norwegian’s CEO.

“We are pleased to have a Swedish AOC in place. With a stronger foothold in Scandinavia we can gain access to more traffic rights and open new direct routes that have not been used for traffic,” says Bjørn Kjos.

“Arlanda has the potential to become a major international traffic hub for flights between Asia and North America, but it requires more aviation-friendly policy and competition on equal terms.”

At some point in the future, Norwegian says it will apply to the US Department of Transport for permission for Norwegian Air Sweden to fly to the US.

So many licences
Norwegian has repeatedly criticised the Swedish government for the introduction of a flight tax on April 1 this year, and the company has already cut its traffic from Arlanda, threatening even more reductions.

But it seems the interests of a Swedish AOC are so significant that a Swedish tax will not stand in the way of Norway’s plans for a stronger focus on Arlanda.

With the new Swedish AOC, Norwegian now has seven operating licences – the only airline in the world with so many. The other six are Norwegian Air Argentina (DN), Norwegian Air International (D8), Norwegian Air Norway (DH), Norwegian Air Shuttle (DY), Norwegian Air UK – NUK (DI) and Norwegian Long Haul (DH).

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