Sri Lankan Airlines to reduce flights to cut costs

July 22, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lankan Airlines plans to reduce flights to cut costs amid soaring fuel prices but said the new schedule would not affect key passenger segments like tourists and migrant workers. The state-owned airline said in a statement it will go ahead with re-fleeting plans by replacing four old aircraft with Airbus A320s by the end of 2008.

Sri Lankan is projecting a fuel bill of 500 million US dollars for the current year at present prices, which accounts for about half of its overall costs.

“The airline is not passing the full impact of the increase in the fuel bill to its passengers,” the statement said.

“At the same time, the national carrier does not intend to become a burden on the Treasury and the country’s taxpayers, and has already put into action several measures to mitigate the impact of fuel price increases. It will continue to do more in the coming months.”

The airline recently introduced a fuel surcharge, as many other international carriers have done.

It will soon be “temporarily” reducing capacity on some routes in its network of 41 destinations in 22 countries in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, the statement said.

“This is nothing unusu