The Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) has become busier with at least five flights using the airport daily, a far cry from the one flight which used the air port during the past year.
MRIA manager Upul Kalansuriya said the airport had at least 400 passengers each day since the closure of the main Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) in January 6, for renovations.
The main runway at the BIA will remain closed during the day until April for the construction of two new runways. the main runway of the airport would be closed for eight hours each day, from 8.30 am to 4.30 pm, for three months.
MRIA was opened in March 2013. Initially, several airlines flew to the airport, including SriLankan Airlines which established a hub. However, due to low demand, most of these airlines left Mattala.
Kalansuriya said that 240 flights had used the airport bringing in 14,000 passengers since January this year.
Airlines Fly Dubai and Indonesia had flights arriving and departing from MRIA, flights to Beijing and Shanghai only departed from the airport, he said.
“We have the facilities to cater to these travellers and the crew. The number of travellers arriving and departing from MRIA is increasing as we speak,” he said. (Darshana Sanjeewa)
rosebud Thursday, 9 February 2017 08:34
Will this turn of events last after BIA returns to normal via DM Android App
Reply : 7 33
ajantha Thursday, 9 February 2017 08:37
Be grateful to MR. If this airport was not there our option would have been either Horagolla or Polonnaruwa
Reply : 79 48
mal Thursday, 9 February 2017 08:40
So Yahapalanaya managed to make MRIA busy like never, why not make some strategy on Hambanthota port as well.
Reply : 40 33
concern Thursday, 9 February 2017 19:53
It is not Yaha but because airlines did not have a choice
Reply : 5 11
TJ Thursday, 9 February 2017 09:05
Now we all know that the MRIA is a good standby airport.
Reply : 30 64
Nuwan Thursday, 9 February 2017 15:32
This airport can be revived but not in this manner as it would return to normal when BIA reopens. However, one good thing is that this will prove its ability to handle traffic.
Reply : 1 18
afwa Thursday, 9 February 2017 15:56
Who the help wants an Airport at southern tip of the Island. MR and their families? An ideal place for a second airport was at Dambulla, to serve majority of Sri Lankans and the tourists.
Reply : 8 8
John V Iagra Thursday, 9 February 2017 17:41
Countrymen...an airport is an asset to the country. Set aside petty differences and work together to make BIA and MRIA successful..good luck!!
Reply : 2 19
brainmaster Thursday, 9 February 2017 18:02
This airport remains a white elephant. It will NEVER operate successfully. The expenditure to keep it open exceeds by far the created income. via DM Android App
Reply : 14 11
motson Thursday, 9 February 2017 18:17
four flights dont know whether to laugh or cry via DM Android App
Reply : 9 10
Rpeiris001 Friday, 10 February 2017 02:45
To those who make anti-MRIA comments:Be positive; cast aside your jealous and hypocritical mindset and adopt one country one nation attitude; otherwise you will be in the dark for ever.
Reply : 3 4
Kolitha Friday, 10 February 2017 02:49
Very intelligent initiative by Mahinda rajapaksa to build the air port in Mattala. This will be the most popular Air Port in future.
Reply : 8 3
Nizam Saturday, 11 February 2017 15:44
If you take count for 30 days, with 240 flights and 14000 passengers, it would be as 8 flights and 467 passengers per day. Much more to be increased at least to even cover cost.
Reply : 0 2
Shanudri Sunday, 12 February 2017 19:12
Compare the daily operational cost with the income. Once BIA opens those petty cash walk away again with ghost airstrip
Reply : 0 0
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