Gulf Air and Qatar Airways have won carrier licenses to operate domestic flights from Saudi Arabia, General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA) revealed on Saturday, according the state news agency (SPA).
GACA said 14 companies had applied for the license. Until now only the national carrier Saudi Airlines and budget airline National Air Services (NAS) have serviced a domestic market of around 27 million people.
With Saudi Arabia's price cap on domestic flights, private airlines have struggled with their profit margins.
Saudi Airlines, which is undergoing a slow privatization process, receives fuel at subsidized prices unlike private carriers, allowing it to offset the limits of the ticket cost ceiling.