CEO Richard Nuttall: During aviation fuel crisis, India supported Sir Lankan Airlines
CEO Richard Nuttall: During aviation fuel crisis, India supported Sir Lankan Airlines || Picture Courtesy: Google Images

New Delhi, India: According to Richard Nuttall, the CEO of the aircraft company, New Delhi has a significant impact on SriLankan Airlines and has assisted it in navigating the obstacles the country’s airlines faced due to the economic crisis.

“Things like wellness, ayurveda, and adventure tourism are on the rise internationally, and Sri Lanka gives them in spades so the visitors will come back,” Nuttall said in an interview with ANI.

However, the third route that we are very strong on is all of the secondary cities in India, especially those that are headed east; if you want to travel from those places to the west, there is a lot of competition, some of which is, to put it bluntly, based on a different economic model.

“But moving east, we are in a special position since we are close to the border with India. Additionally, no airline is better positioned geographically to profit from many travellers heading east. Sri Lankans are highly versed in customer service and have genuine hospitality that fits in well with Indian markets. Sri Lanka receives visitors from India,” he said, continuing, “India is vital to the airline.”

Nuttall hailed India for its assistance, noting that New Delhi had provided the fuel and that the civil aviation authorities had supported the nations.

The airlines claimed that while Covid negatively influenced Sri Lanka’s economy, the protracted crisis between Russia and Ukraine had raised the cost of aviation turbine fuel (ATF).

“It was essentially an isolated incident in July and August when Sri Lanka ran out of petrol. So I’m not sure why a national airline would have to run without jet fuel. We are, therefore, really fortunate that the civil aviation sector was truly aware of what was happening in the nation. Therefore, they steadily cut everyone’s quota. Therefore, we had to make deck stops in India at first, and we had to obtain permission from the Indian government. However, once everyone knew what was happening, everyone was quite helpful and encouraging, and we received cooperation from the airport and oil companies,” he stated.

Sri Lankan airlines CEO added, “Additionally, we essentially maintained a full schedule for two months while deck stops from India were made on the network. In general, we would want to express our gratitude for all of the help we received from Indian airports and civil aviation authorities.”