Organisers of the GP2 Series have confirmed plans to run a new Asian championship, which will take place from January to April next year.
The mini series, called GP2 Asia Series, is expected to include at least three rounds, two of which are likely to be Grand Prix support races. No calendar or venues have been officially confirmed.
"It is of great importance that the GP2 Asia Series maintains a strong and viable link to Formula One," said series organiser Bruno Michel. "Our inclusion as the support races on the programme of Asian Grands Prix in 2008 is an essential key in this new venture."
GP2 Asia will join forces with the new Speedcar Series, for one-make stock cars, which kicks off later this year. Race weekends called 'Grand Racing' will feature both series.
Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone said of the development: "The popularity of motorsport in Asia and the Middle East is growing all the time, and the Grand Racing event is well poised to capitalise on this.
"It will also give gifted drivers from the region greater opportunity to aim for F1 seats in the future."
One of GP2's current Asian racers, India's Karun Chandhok, welcomed the news.
"I'm definitely interested in it," said Chandhok. "It's going to be great for the region, a real boost for motorsport there. It will give drivers extra mileage and the possibility to learn Grand Prix venues, so I will certainly be considering it."