Mattala airport to be developed to attract more flights

The Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) is to developed to attract more flights.

Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) (Limited) said that during the months of June and July the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport handled more than 50 international flight movements facilitating over 2188 passengers.

Indigo airlines operated 20 international flight movements to MRIA (ATR 72/A320) between 26th June to 31st July and handled 358 passengers. At present the airline is having frequent flight operations to MRIA under the repatriation/ crew changing programs. Further, airline representatives visited MRIA recently and had shown their willingness to commence scheduled flight operations to MRIA once the boarder restrictions are eased out.

Director (Operations) Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) Ltd Shehan Sumanasekara  said that MRIA will be developed as an Exotic Tourism Based Destination.

Sumanasekara noted MRIA will be offering special concessions for the  airlines willing to commence scheduled international flight operations and all nine Freedoms of the air to any foreign airline operating in and out of MRIA will be offered.

Plans are under way to re-start the Hambantota development program and it is expected that the eco-system around the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport will be developed in the near future.

Sumanasekara said that Air India, Air Asia, Alliance Air, Myanmar Airlines, and Indigo Airlines to name a few, have had initial discussions with Sri Lanka to commence scheduled flight operations to Mattala.  (Colombo Gazette)

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