MRIA goes from airport to paddy storage facility


Sri Lanka’s second international airport which has seen very flew planes from the time it was launched, is now being considered as a storage facility for paddy.

The Paddy Marketing Board said that a storage facility at the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) is being considered as an option to store paddy harvest from the Maha season.

Paddy Marketing Board Chairman M.D. Dissanayake told the Colombo Gazette that the MRIA is not being taken by force as claimed by some, but is being looked only as an option to store paddy.

“We look at several options and we have stored paddy at several locations and we heard that there is a storage facility at the airport which is not being used so we are looking at the option to use that to store paddy from the Maha season,” he said.

Dissanayake however said that a final decision has not been taken on using MRIA and documents have also not been signed.

“All this is still at a discussion stage. Nothing has been finalized. It is being looked at as an option,” he said.

The new international airport built under the Mahianda Rajapaksa regime, was expected to expand the local aviation industry whilst being a catalyst for the country’s economic development enabling international trade, tourism, vocational training and employment. It was being implemented as an eco-friendly project.

The airport cost an estimated US$210 million and was built to be compatible with the latest Airbus A380 aircraft. Air Arabia, Rotana Jet, Sri Lankan Airlines and Mihin Air flew to Mattala at various times, but all cancelled service for commercial reasons. (Colombo Gazette)


  1. Actually is there a real need of an airport at matt ala. If so there must be thousand of arrivals. Any investment should simply must be based on return.

  2. This is another piece of crap reporting by the PM in his interview at Denrana to discredit the former government and earn votes. Did they not say the Port City was a waste, did they not say the highways costs are high and questioned if they were built of gold? Did they not say that Mihin was going to me merged (and now they want it). Did the not show the Temple trees and claim that it was renovated and MR lived like a king? who occupies it now? the PM, RW. All bull to deceive people of the country to get votes. This never happened before. I dont like being deceived and I dont like people being deceived. Please vote intelligently.

  3. you can set-up dairy farm using Pakistan’s buffalos which is better due to dry weather condition prevailing in this the mean time that large ticket ground can be used to grow grass to feed them. so both place can be used some economically viable project. some time when stolen assets is recovered just pay off Chinese loans and interest. this was the out come of politically motivated pact project in the jungle of no ware

  4. Feral Engineers like Champika Ranawaka and pigs like Ravi Karunanayake are the Cabinet of this Government with gender-less Ranil. These people cannot understand the vale of having an Airport in the vicinity of harbour which can bring millions of dollars in a month. Any country in the world would be dreaming to divert a part of 400 ships sailing daily 100km away. Income from Re-fueling for ships is enough to run half of the country. This is why these people want to dismantle these facilities? Singapore will lose their income if Hambantota becomes the Commercial Hub. West does not want Sri Lanka become self sufficient. America does not want increased activity around their Diego Garcia secret Air base which is next to Hambantota. Sri Lanka needs a strong Government to stay independent and develop the country. Also, Presidents without backbones will do nothing to a country.

  5. Or you could use it to race lambourgini,s and ferrari,s …store avant guard weapons …A holiday camp for all those chinese tourists we are expecting..a wild animal reserve…a bus driver training area..Or just leave it as a monument to mans ego and vanity.

  6. pickpocket p.m., don’t let your people to insult national property, it doesn’t matter whoever build ,it ‘s belong to country,it’s national property,we remember what you people have done to the paddy marketing board during 80’s,i think sirisena people must punish for this type of crime

  7. We need to consider seriously using this valuable premises for storing paddy which will ruined the entire premises. Now that it is there, I feel it is advisable to consider this building to be used for some other purpose to avoid the above purpose, even by seeking other alternatives for paddy stores.

  8. Why can’t this white elephant dismantled and used to upgrade and reopen Palay International Airport?
    Unless the this is done the Tamil diaspora and Eelam Tamils will at the present regime with continued suspicion

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