Sri Lankan Airlines and Mihin to be jointly run: officials

April 21, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lankan Airlines and Mihin Air would be commercially run together after new chief executives take-over but the two airlines would remain as separate entities, officials said. But the government has so far not given him permission to leave the airline, he said.

G T Jayaseelan, SriLankan’s former head of commercial, who was later transferred to Japan by the Emirates management, is tipped to head Mihin Air.

Vaas Gunewardena said Mihin’s fleet would be increased to three aircraft in order to improve its commercial viability.

The airline which was started in April 24 last year had lost 1.6 billion rupees by the end of March 2008.

The airline earned revenues of 3.3 billion and 61 percent came from abroad, Vaas Gunewardena said. Mihin had carried 190,000 passengers in the period.

Vaas Gunewardena said about 2.0 billion rupees needed to be injected run the airline effectively.

Originally 3 billion rupees was requested to start the airline, but the government only gave 250 million. One billion rupees was borrowed from Bank of Ceylon.

This year’s budget had allocated only 500 million rupees. The company is also 400 million in debt to state-run Ceyl