ECONOMYNEXT – State-run Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) Ltd, a firm that runs airports has lost 1,792 million rupees up to August 2021 as the country gradually opens up for international traffic.
The firm lost 688 million rupees up to July in 2020, when it operated normally in January and February and part of March when airports were closed.
Full-year losses were 3,748 million rupees in 2020, according to Finance Ministry data.
In 2019, AASL made profits of 15.2 billion rupees.
During the first half of 2021, there had been 166,648 arrivals and 125,525 departures.
AASL is expanding its terminal to cater to 14 million passengers by 2024 with a Japanese loan.
Along with Colombo Port, AASL has is among the most profitable state enterprises. Both the Port and Airport has been developed on long term feasibility studies of the Japan International Corporation Agency and Asian Development Bank, which had assured repayment capacity.
However, Mattala and Hambantota Ports were done by Chinese loans and had resulted in losses.
The airport however has high embarkation fees compared to East Asia. (Colombo/Nov18/2021)