Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation Nimal Siripala de Silva says around 75 percent of the renovation of the runway at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) has been completed and the construction will come to an end in a month.
Under the current renovation project, the runway of the airport will be widened up to 75 meters from 60 meters and the airport will be developed to operate largest aircraft such as A-380 Airbus aircraft.
The Colombo International Airport has been closed for a period of eight hours from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm from 06th January to 05th of April to allow the resurfacing of the runway, which is being reconstructed after a lapse of 30 years.
Minister de Silva said after the renovation, the runway can be used for over 20 years without any repair. The Construction of the 2nd terminal of the Katunayake airport will begin in July.
The national carrier SriLankan Airlines has cancelled several flights and shifted other flights to alternate times of the day during the three-month period of renovation.
Partial closure of the runway contributed to the marginal decline observed in tourist arrivals in February. For the first time since the war ended in 2009, tourist arrivals declined by 0.1 percent in February 2017 compared to the same period in previous year.