Biman Bangladesh Airlines is to return to Manchester airport in the new year after pulling out in 2012.

Flights will run three times a week to the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka and Sylhet.

Biman will use a Boeing 787 Dreamliner on the route, which will start on January 4.

Flights will operate on Saturdays, Sundays and Tuesdays taking ten hours. The Dreamliner will have 24 seats in business class and 247 in economy.

Return business class fares start at £1,500 and £580 in economy.

The Dhaka service will operate via the eastern Bangladeshi city of Sylhet on its return from Manchester.

The national flag carrier of Bangladesh last flew from the northern hub airport seven years ago until a Dhaka-Manchester-New York service was withdrawn.

More than 55,000 people a year are estimated to travel from Manchester airport’s catchment area to Dhaka and Syhlet, with around 600,000 people travelling to destinations in Biman’s onward network.

The airline’s return was confirmed at a special event at the British High Commission in Dhaka, including Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, who is leading a ten-day delegation to Bangladesh and India.

Manchester airport CEO Andrew Cowan said: “We have known for some time there is significant demand for a direct service to Bangladesh and so we are delighted to be confirming this news today.

“Manchester airport is the UK’s gateway to the north of England and within our catchment area there are many long-standing Bangladeshi communities for whom this will make a massive difference.

“We know there are many northern companies with a desire to trade in Bangladesh, while we also look forward to welcoming business and leisure visitors from that part of the world.

“This long-haul route is the latest we have added to Manchester in recent years, as we continue to work hard to connect the north to key international destinations.”

Burnham added: “It is a great boost for this inaugural Greater Manchester visit to Bangladesh to achieve this new service.

“A direct connection between Manchester and Bangladesh will bring many trade, cultural and educational benefits and as well as being hugely valued by the many families of Bangladesh heritage living in Greater Manchester and across the north.”