AIRLINE BMI Regional has signalled it is confident of further growth helped by strong oil and gas-related traffic from its Aberdeen hub.

The carrier, which became an independent two years ago, already employs more than 130 people in the north east of Scotland including operations and engineering staff as well as flight crew.

It runs flights from there to Bristol, Manchester, Norwich, Esbjerg in Denmark, and the Norwegian cities of Kristiansund and Oslo.

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BMI Regional, which has its registered office in ­Aberdeen is opening two new European routes, from Berlin and Gothenburg to Kalmar Oland Airport in southern Sweden, in September.

That same month it is also upping the frequency on the Aberdeen to Bristol and East Midlands to Brussels routes.

Cathal O'Connell, chief executive, believes the airline will continue to create jobs in the coming years and said: "Thus far in 2014 we have seen significant traffic growth across our route network, especially Bristol and our oil and gas services from Aberdeen, and expect this to continue through the rest of the year.

"Last year saw significant development and investment to establish our standalone business, and this year we've expanded the network within Europe and from the UK and established partnerships with global carriers."

The airline carried almost 500,000 passengers and flew more than 10 million kilometres in 2013.

It has its own fleet of 18 Embraer jets.