Transport and Civil Aviation Minister Arjuna Ranatunga kicking off the Rs.2.25 billion upgrade of the Palaly airport
- Announces Rs.2.25bn upgrade
- To facilitate easy travel to India
The government expects to open the Palaly airport, which is set to undergo an over Rs.2 billion upgrading, for international traffic by this August, according to a media communiqué by the Transport and Civil Aviation Ministry.
The airport located in the former war-torn Northern Province, is to be positioned as a key airport facilitating travel to India.
The government has allocated Rs.1, 950 million to upgrade the currently military-run airport, while the Indian government has agreed to offer Rs.300 million as a grant. The first phase of the project will entail the re-laying of the first 950 metres of the runway which is currently being used. Officials said, this would allow operations of Bombardier-100 aircraft, which have less than 72 seats, at the Palaly airport.
The second phase would involve the re-laying of the runway up to 1.5 kilometres and the third phase of the project will be to extend the re-laying to 2.3 kilometres.
Transport and Civil Aviation Minister Arjuna Ranatunga said he expects to hold talks with the Finance Ministry to issue air tickets at cheaper rates to passengers travelling from the Palaly airport.