Adding Wings

The Civil Aviation Authority says it is processing applications to allow local firms to operate a few international schedule flights from Sri Lanka.
The international operations will materialise through charter flights to neighbouring countries, the aviation watchdog said in a statement on Tuesday.rn

rnThe watchdog says move is part of the government decision to shift towards an lquote open skies policy and also to promote a level playing field.rn

rnThe statement did not say how many firms had sought a licence. However, local tour operators say a private operator offering international services, is unlikely to take off till 2005.rn

rnSriLankan Airlines, is currently the sole local airline allowed to operate flights from Sri Lanka.rn

rnThe government is also in the process of re-negotiating its terms with SriLankan Airlines management partner, Emirates Airlines.rn

rnUnder the terms being discussed, the national carrier is set to lose its monopoly rights on catering and ground handling.rn