CAA to develop
‘Ruhunu Open Skies’
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA),
is preparing to start work in areas demarcated in the
south for the development of domestic civil aviation
under the ‘Ruhunu Open Skies’, project.
“Also known as ‘Southern
Free Skies’, this project aims to enhance the
wide spectrum of aviation activity dedicated to the
southern of Sri Lanka and could be taken in its entirety
as a basic framework to develop aviation in the region,”
Wing Commander Sunil Cabraal, Assistant Director Aviation
told The Sunday Times FT, adding that this project would
be launched on November 16.
He said this involves a proposal to
develop a coastal belt from Kalutara to Arugam Bay in
Pottuvil and the adjacent 200 nautical miles Maritime
Economic Zone, adding that this area is encompassed
by Kalutara, Neboda, Elpitiya, Akuressa, Panamurre,
Balangoda, Kirigalpotta mountain peak, Haputale, Ella,
Haliella, Lunugala, Weerawila, Yala and a line from
a point of one nautical mile inland at Yala to one nautical
mile inland at Potuvil to the coast. “This area
can accommodate a wide range of aviation activity from
flying schools, hang gliding, para gliding, para jumping,
sail para flying, ballooning, float plane operations,
micro-light and ultra light aircraft, model air craft
and kites,” he added.
He said the direct and indirect economic
advantages to the state and the region, with sustainable
employment of quality, of which the southern rural population
is very much deprived of at present, will be the 'hallmark'
objective that is achieved via the medium of aviation.
“With this project there will
be a huge technological advancement and the development
of the quality of life of the people of the south will
be elevated,” he added.