Inbound travellers expected from Tuesday: New high-tech lab for BIA

  • AASL awaiting Health Ministry approval 

  • Test results for inbound/outbound travellers in one hour 

  • Health guidelines adherence probed by Army/AASL

By Yoshitha Perera   


Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) (Pvt.) Ltd. (AASL) is awaiting approval from the Health Ministry for the use of the high-tech laboratory facility that is already being established, following the Government’s decision to lift the temporary travel restrictions imposed on inbound travellers to Sri Lanka effective 1 June 2021, The Sunday Morning learnt. 

Speaking with The Sunday Morning, AASL Chairman Maj. Gen. (Retd.) G.A. Chandrasiri said that the new high-tech laboratory is being constructed adjacent to the Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake, and would facilitate both arriving and departing passengers to obtain their PCR test results in one hour.  

He noted further that this laboratory is equipped with high-tech advanced medical equipment to provide the PCR results within an hour, which would in turn enable both types of passengers to leave the airport early. 

Explaining about implementing health guidelines, Chandarasiri said that the Army and the AASL would collaborate to probe into whether or not passengers are adhering to the health guidelines.  

He added that certain restrictions are coming in as per the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) guidelines, noting also that all tourists would have to go through the 14 days of mandatory quarantine.        

The Sri Lankan Government on Wednesday (26) decided to lift the temporary travel restrictions imposed on inbound travellers to the country with effect from Tuesday (1 June). However, the restrictions for passengers from India would continue until further notice.  

According to the statement issued by the CAA, the total number of passengers per flight should not exceed 75, including tourists. It also mentioned that all inbound travellers should be compulsorily quarantined at a quarantine hotel, quarantine centre, or a safe and secure certified level one hotel until the completion of 14 days, as per the guidelines of the Director General of Health Services dated 11 May 2021, irrespective of the type and number of doses of the Covid-19 vaccines they have obtained. 

Sri Lankan passport holders and dual citizens do not require approval to land in Sri Lanka. Foreign nationals, seafarers, and those coming for business reasons and investment-related purposes, etc., require approvals from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to enter Sri Lanka along with the entry visa. 

Tourists arriving in Sri Lanka have been requested to refer to the Tourist Board directions at the website link for further information, the CAA statement noted. 

A negative PCR test result must be received by all categories of travellers prior to the departure from the point of origin as per the airline and the country’s requirements. Further, all passengers must adhere to the quarantine procedure.