Sri Lanka opens 2nd international airport

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has commissioned the country’s second international airport built at a cost of $209 million.

By (AP)

Published: Mon 18 Mar 2013, 1:56 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 5:08 AM

Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport, named after the president, was officially opened onMonday in his native district of Hambantota, 165 kilometers (102 miles) southeast of the capital, Colombo.

Built with a Chinese loan, the airport has an initial capacity of 1 million passengers a year. It can handle 30,000 aircraft movements and 45,000 metric tons of cargo annually. Officials hope it will open the island’s south to tourism.

After ending of the country’s civil war in 2009, Rajapaksa’s government has invested heavily in infrastructure development, with special emphasis on his district. The airport is the third big recent infrastructure project in Hambantota

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