Country to officially open airports, allow inbound tourists from Jan 21

5 January 2021 01:44 pm - 12     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The country's airports will be officially opened for commercial passenger transportation and tourists from January 21 as per the health guidelines, Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga said.

Accordingly, the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) at Katunayake and Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) will be opened for commercial flights after ten months, the Minister said.

Addressing the media he said, he would expect commercial flights to touch down at our airports and all airport formalities would return to normal by January 23. 

“Nearly three million people in the country are directly and indirectly dependent on the tourism industry and that they have become totally helpless due to the COVID-19 epidemic situation,” Minister Ranatunga said.

Considering the current situation faced by them, the Government has decided to reopen all airports to boost the tourism industry, he said. (Chaturanga Samarawickrama)

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  Comments - 12

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  • Noname Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:22 PM

    Airports are open for foreigners but closed for locals. A land like no other indeed!

    REX Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:28 PM

    No point of quarantine and restricting district movements, when borders are opened and tourists are allowed to roam free! This is beyond stupid. It is highly DANGEROUS!

    Kanthaka Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:33 PM

    Short fix will result in long term disaster!

    lankan Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:40 PM

    Where is Sudarshani Fernandopulle to reject this news?

    eresh S kumara Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:44 PM

    Even the pandemic can be boosted afterwards

    Sam Tuesday, 05 January 2021 03:46 PM

    What about locals, what about expats?

    General Public Tuesday, 05 January 2021 05:45 PM

    Sorry we do not entertain our own people, who suffers abroad...

    CB Tuesday, 05 January 2021 04:32 PM

    So locals still have to come and go through quarantine process? What are we looking at here? Entry for foreigners, no entry/ restricted for locals. Fundamental rights?

    TJ Tuesday, 05 January 2021 04:43 PM

    First, start vaccination and then open the airport. As usual, the officials are trying to put the horse before the cart.

    Premalal Perera Tuesday, 05 January 2021 05:08 PM

    This is a good move. At least it is pragmatic. No country can survive on quarantinning healthy people due to any reason. Otherwise the cure would be worse than the decease. What we really need is the protection of the vulnerable because the young and healthy can withstand the virus.

    John Stewart Tuesday, 05 January 2021 05:08 PM

    Noname - I think the words "commercial passenger transportation" covers everyone - locals, expats, residents, foreigners and tourists for business or pleasure.

    Don Munasinghe Tuesday, 05 January 2021 05:30 PM

    Mandate a PCR before arrival and one at the airport for citizens..if both negative let them go home..stop this drama of 14 days quarantine for negative personnel...how could you possibly let stranded citizens to come home with this stupid rule..how can they go back to their jobs when 14 days are wasted for qurantine....tell me a single country does the same...what a wasteful decision makers... Also..Sri Lanka is a mid-income country. Always there are ways to allocate funds when genuinely required, like now, but it is the policy that does not allow expediting the process to obtain a vaccine. Government has to consider this as an investment since when more citizens are vaccinated it will give us a better chance to transition to normal life ASAP which will revive our economy. Stop wasting time on tourism at this point..think about SL citizens...Cant believe that relevant officials wasted precious time on "Peniya" rather than negotiating to procure vaccines...


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