Kenya Airways has announced the expansion of its global network through a new codeshare agreement with Etihad Airways, the United Arab Emirates’ national airline. The new codeshare services between Etihad Airways and Kenya Airways go on sale on March 15, for travel from April 1 onwards.Dr Titus Naikuni, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Kenya Airways, said: “This new codeshare agreement is a significant development for Kenya Airways that enables us to provide our passengers with convenient access to the capital of the UAE and onwards on the extensive Etihad Airways network” Under the new codeshare agreement, Kenya Airways will initially place its KQ code on Etihad Airways existing daily service between Nairobi and Abu Dhabi, and onwards to 32 destinations on Etihad’s global network. This will provide passengers with connections over Abu Dhabi to destinations across North Asia, South East Asia, the Indian sub-continent and Australia.In return, Etihad Airways will place its EY code on Kenya Airways flights from Abu Dhabi to Nairobi, and onwards to 27 destinations across the Kenya Airways network in Africa. The connections will provide passengers with connections over Nairobi to destinations in East, West & Southern Africa.The agreement with Etihad Airways brings the number of strategic codeshares that Kenya Airways has signed with other international carriers to 18. In turn the codeshare with the national carrier of Kenya brings to 42 the number of codeshare partners for Etihad Airways, providing the airline with a combined network of more than 349 destinations, more than any other Middle East airlineThe agreement paves way for greater collaboration between the two airlines on joint procurement of services for ground handling, line and heavy maintenance, training and cargo operations.James Hogan, Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “The partnership agreement with Kenya Airways is in line with our strategy of forming alliances with airlines around the world to enhance our network and marketing reach.“Last year we launched new services to Tripoli, Nairobi and Lagos, and over the last five years we have more than doubled our services to Africa, reflecting the increasing importance of the continent. During the same period we have flown nearly three million passengers between Africa and the UAE, and key destinations across our network.”The airlines are working on the integration of their respective frequent flyer programs, Etihad Guest and Kenya Airway’s Flying Blue, to provide travellers with enhanced premium service benefits, enabling them to earn and redeem miles on each other’s flights. Kenya Airways will also launch a new three times a week service between Nairobi and Abu Dhabi, the UAE capital effective June 2013. This is intended to give passengers improved connections and greater choice.