Early Bird

Malaysia’s successful budget carrier AirAsia, is in early talks with Sri Lanka’s aviation authorities as it eyes Colombo for its next regional expansion. Malaysia’s successful budget carrier AirAsia, is in early talks with Sri Lanka’s aviation authorities as it eyes Colombo for its next regional expansion. “We are at very early stages. We have just started talking to the Civil Aviation Authority last week and we are interested in applying for a license,” AirAsia Chief Executive Officer Tony Fernandes told LBO on Friday.

“We are expanding into the ASEAN region and have not yet into the Indian subcontinent mainly due to a lack of aircraft. But it will happen, we’re coming soon,” Fernandes said, on the sidelines while visiting Colombo to address Chartered Institute of Management Accountants national conference.

Grown to an US$ 800 mn airline in three years, AirAsia is to buy up another 100 A320 aircrafts to meet expansion plans in the region including Sri Lanka.

The Malaysian based carrier is eyeing Colombo, three hours and 15 minutes away from Kuala Lumpur, for its potential to carry Malaysian tourists and Buddhist pilgrims from Thailand.