Minister of City Planning and Water Supply Rauff Hakeem is on an official visit to Turkey as a special representative of the Prime Minister to explore opportunities to open up the Turkish market for Sri Lankan tea and discuss closer economic and trade ties between the two countries.
One of his official meetings was with the Deputy Chairman and CEO of Turkish Airlines Dr. Temel Kotil and other senior executives. Among matters discussed were closer cooperation between the Turkish Airlines and the Sri Lankan Airlines and the possibility of the Turkish Airlines utilizing Mattala Airport as a maintenance hub. Promotion of Sri Lanka as a tourist destination by the Turkish Airlines was also discussed.
Dr.Kotil was eminently receptive to the suggestion made and as a follow up to this wishes to invite a team of officials from the Sri Lankan Airlines to discuss the areas of mutual cooperation and strategic alliance. He also agreed to host a delegation of Sri Lankan inbound travel agents in Istanbul for a an introductory program with the Turkish Airlines travel agents both in Turkey and in Europe.
Minister Hakeem expressed his appreciation to the Turkish Airlines for their interest in Sri Lanka and promised to coordinate the follow up actions with the various line agencies and ministries.