Civil Aviation And Finance Ministries Clash Over SriLankan Airlines: Minister reveals

Civil Aviation Minister Priyankara Jayarathne has admitted that there is a tug of war between the Civil Aviation Ministry and the Finance Ministry over the administration of SriLankan Airlines.

The Civil Aviation Minister has said that the SriLankan Airlines does not act in accordance with certain decisions made by the Civil Aviation Ministry.

“Although I have the authority over the institution through regulations, SriLankan Airlines is controlled by the Finance Ministry. There is a difference of opinion between the two parties. The present administrative structure of SriLankan Airlines creates problems, “ the Minister has said in an interview with the ‘Lankadeepa’ newspaper today (26).

“Although I am the Minister, I am helpless sometimes. That creates disappointment and frustration!” the Minister has said in the interview adding that there should be a drastic change in the administration of SriLankan Airlines.

Responding to a question in Parliament a few months ago, Minister Jayarathne said that Sri Lankan Airlines has incurred a loss of Rs. 25 billion during the last financial year (2013-2014).

The Minister also added that the daily expenditure of one employee at Sri Lankan Airlines stands at Rs. 166722.  “Although 6523 employees are presently working at Sri Lankan Airlines, the company is still short of staff,” he said.

“Total debts of Sri Lankan Airlines stand at USD 4o million while total bank overdrafts stand at USD 50 million. In addition, there are mid-term loans standing at USD 140 million. The total indebtedness of Sri Lankan Airlines amounts to USD 230 million,” the Minister said explaining the present state of affairs in the institution. 

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