Pre fabricated terminal for BIA | Daily News

Pre fabricated terminal for BIA

More domestic airlines to take wing

A pre fabricated terminal will be set up at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) soon, an official from the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation said.

He said there was a mega plan to build a terminal at BIA but it had to be suspended due to many reasons. Due to the high cost of a permanent terminal and time duration it takes to built it, the authorities opted for a pre fabricated terminal which would be around Rs. 400 million.

“The Ministry has now decided to shoulder the financial burden of building the new terminal.” The tender process in this connection is yet to be finalized.

“Once the tender procedure is finalized the new terminal would be installed in less than six months,” the official said.

Currently the BIA has around 300 aircraft movements per month and delays are being experienced due to insufficient facilities some times. “With a new terminal the passenger movement issues can be eased out to a greater extent. It would also support for domestic operations from BIA,” the official said.

Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation has reopened the Batticalo airport with a new terminal and better facilities. In a bid to promote tourism, the government has taken steps to develop domestic airports. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe recently said there are plans to set up a third International Airport that will be constructed in Hingurakgoda as part of the development plan for Trincomalee.

“Trincomalee would be re-positioned as the ‘Eastern Tourism Hub with increased regional connectivity realized through the Colombo-Trincomalee economic corridor development and the proposed Hingurakgoda International Airport,” the PM said.

The premier also said that both Palali and Iranamadu Airports too would be redeveloped with better facilities to accommodate more domestic flights.

“Local domestic airline operators including - Cinnamon Air which operated scheduled domestic flights, Simplifly -Sri Lanka´s most experienced domestic and domestic airline that operator, FlySouthern, IWS Aviation and Sakurai are planning to increase investments to develop the domestic air travel in the future, the official from the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation said.

He said that they have also received more inquires on operating licenses from local companies.

Chairman Simplifly, Suresh Mirchandani said they have brought down a brand new 10-seater Kodiak aircraft.

“We want a better commitment from the government with regard to facilities that are being offered for domestic airlines before we commit on a scheduled domestic airline operation.”

Hayleys PLC Chairman and Chief Executive Mohan Pandithage lauds any effort to boost travel and tourism in Sri Lanka however the group clarified that they were not currently exploring any form of investment in a domestic airline at this time.


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