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September 07, 2014

Taking Sri Lanka one more step closer to becoming an Aviation Hub as envisioned in the ‘Mahinda Chinthana – Vision for the Future’, The Phase II Stage 2 of the Project for the Development of the Bandaranaike International Airport was launched jointly by His Excellency the President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Prime Minster of Japan His Excellency Shinzō Abe at 1 p.m. today (7th September 2014). The glittering ceremony took place upon arrival of the Prime Minister of Japan at BIA commencing a two day official visit to the island.

The Japanese Prime Minister His Excellency Shinzō Abe, his wife Madam Akie Abe and the accompanying delegation was welcomed at BIA by the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa, the first lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa along with a special government delegation. Thereafter the Prime Minster was ushered to the ceremony site where the plaque was unveiled symbolizing the ceremonial launch of the project.

Under this development stage, the capacity of BIA which presently stands at 6 Million Passenger Movements per annum will be increased to 15 million. An additional finger pier will be constructed to the west of the existing one. A two tier passenger terminal with arrivals and departures physically separated as found in most modern airports will also be constructed. A rapid exit to the Colombo Katunayake Highway will be provided directly from the terminal. Stage 2 itself is to be implemented in two stages and the first stage is scheduled to be completed by early 2017.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is providing assistance for this stage with the loan agreement being signed directly with Airport & Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) Ltd. This is symbolic of the strong bonds of friendship between the two countries that dates back to the post second world war era. Once the Phase II Stage 2 of BIA development is complete it will stand as a monument of this lasting friendship.

Photos by: AASL media