Feb 03, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s SMB Leasing (SMBL) and Lanka Ashok Leyland (LAL) have begun importing luxury tourist coaches amid a boom in tourist arrivals and a shortage of vehicles, a statement said. Leasing facilities have been provided by SMBL to the buyer of the first three imported luxury LAL tourist coaches.
The move is the latest outcome of a partnership entered into by the two companies in August 2010, under which SMBL was appointed as the sole distributor and transport solutions provider for LAL for the northern and eastern provinces.
Sri Lanka is experiencing an influx of tourists with arrivals hitting a record 600,000 last year after the end of its 30-year ethnic war which led to the neglect of infrastructure development, resulting in a shortage of modern vehicles to transport visitors.
Umesh Gautam, chief executive of Lanka Ashok Leyland said the coaches were imported shortly after he observed the shortage of tourist coaches in the country.
This is only the beginning of our joint efforts, said Gautam. Another consignment of luxury tourist coaches is expected to be imported shortly.”
Sumedha Fernando, chief executive of SMBL said the firm expects 700 mi