Friday . August 18 . 2017
         
 
Share |
Trade advises caution in Sri Lanka's push for open skies
Feizal Samath, reporting from Hospitality Investment Conference Indian Ocean 2015, Colombo, May 26, 2015
 

SRI Lanka is planning to adopt an open skies policy to boost tourism numbers as it guns for 2.5 million arrivals in 2016, but aviation and travel experts are urging the government to proceed carefully.

 

Speaking at the ongoing Hospitality Investment Conference Indian Ocean in Colombo, finance minister Ravi Karunanayake said: “We are adopting an open skies policies similar to the Maldives to attract more visitors and encourage more investments.”

 

Although Sri Lanka does not formally have an open skies policy, in recent years it has granted more frequencies to foreign airlines. National carrier SriLankan Airlines currently accounts for over 60 per cent of flights.

 

Suresh Mendis, CEO at Classic Travels, expects the move to boost tourism and grow business but was unsure if the policy would have an effect without a reciprocal arrangement for SriLankan Airlines flying to other destinations.

 

Meanwhile, Sunil Peiris, aviation veteran and director of Jetwing Travels and Jetwing Air, warned that Sri Lanka needs to be cautious about the effect open skies has on national priorities.

 

“While the third and fourth freedoms, which apply to point-to-point travel is okay, the fifth and sixth freedoms have to be reciprocal, otherwise Sri Lanka could suffer,” he said. 

 
Print Top Stories
 
RATE THIS ARTICLE
Poor 1 2 3 4 5 Good
 
COMMENTS
No comment for this article.
 
  POST YOUR COMMENT  
       
  Name:  
Email Address:
Location:
  Comment:  
  Enter the code shown: