Sri Lanka domestic air services chased by 13 firms: official

July 19, 2010 (LBO ) – Thirteen firms that applied to start domestic air services in Sri Lanka after the end of a 30-year war are awaiting the final nod from the island’s aviation ministry and the president’s office, an official said. Director general of Sri Lanka’s civil aviation authority H M C Nimalsiri said domestic, foreign and joint ventures between local and overseas firms had applied to fly within the island.

“We have sent the applications for approval to the aviation ministry and the President’s office,” he said.

“To import aircraft to Sri Lanka approval of the Presidential office is needed. Within 60 days of approval these companies can start operations.” Sri Lanka’s leisure industry has called for domestic air services to take high-end tourist to resorts away from Colombo.

The island’s air force also operates a commercial service to Jaffna and charters to airstrips especially in the east. The military has VIP transport aircraft which it bought during a 30-year war which ended last year.