Korean Air Lines Co., South Korea’s leading air carrier, said Thursday that it has acquired a 44% stake in the troubled Czech air line, paving its way toward a market expansion in Europe. Korean Air, headed by chief executive Cho Yang-ho, signed an agreement for the stake purchase with officials from the state-run Czech Airlines (CSA), the Korean company said in a press release relayed by Yonhap news agency today. In a related development, Scoot, the budget arm of Singapore Airlines Ltd, has said that it will fly to Seoul in June, a move that could further heat up competition in one of the world’s fastest growing aviation markets. The medium-to-long-haul carrier said it will operate flights between Incheon and Singapore via Taiwan with the Boeing 777-200 passenger jet three times a week. The upcoming service will be available on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.