Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has now resumed tri-weekly flights to Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka; it was revealed in a report published by the Airport and Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka.
The report further revealed that the first PIA flight arrived at Colombo’s Katunayake International Airport on 19th February at 1930hrs, and departed on its return journey at 2045hrs. Since the inaugural flight, a tri-weekly schedule has been established with regular connections on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at the same arrival and departure times mentioned.
On the inaugural flight was a group of representatives from PIA led by its Managing Director, who were received by a group of Sri Lankan parliamentary Ministers upon arrival in the country. It is widely speculated that the aim behind establishing these air connections between the two nations is for the purpose of boosting trade. Currently, bilateral trade between the two countries stands at approximately USD 300m, with talks underway to increase this figure to USD 2b, by 2015.
Sri Lanka has also seen a vast increase in tourist arrivals from Pakistan since the launch of PIA’s new tri-weekly service to the island just over a month ago. However, “it has only been a short period since the service began, and we are expecting the number of tourist arrivals to grow significantly give time, said Sri Lankan MP Susil Premajayantha.