A representative of the Treasury was not in the board of directors at SriLankan Airlines, after the departure of Emirates to look after the interest of the government who is the main shareholder of the institution , it was revealed at the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) on irregularities at SriLankan Airlines, SriLankan Catering and Mihin Lanka yesterday.
Yasantha Dissanayake, Head of Financial Management at SriLankan told the PCoI that Sri Lankan government is the main shareholder of the airline, who currently owns 99% of the shares. However after PB Jayasundara, who was the Treasury Secretary, was the Chairperson when Emirates managed the airline, no one else representing the Treasury has been in the SriLankan Board.
“Sri Lankan Government has also directly pumped Rs. 46.6 billion into the airline since 2012,” he said.
Dissanayake also added that SriLankan Airlines made a profit of Rs. 568 million in the2006/2007 financial year and Rs. 4.4 billion in 2007/2008. However it has been making losses since the departure of Emirates. “In 2008/09 financial year, after Emirates left, airline made a loss of Rs. 9.3 billion, under the Chairmanship of Nishantha Wickramasinghe. The CEO was Manoj Gunawardena. The loss was Rs. 2.69 billion in 2009/10 financial year and it dropped to Rs. 381 million in 2010/11 financial year. However in 2011/12 financial year, after Kapila Chandrasena took over the CEO post, the loss increased to Rs 19.6 billion. The loss was Rs. 21.7 billion in 2012/13 financial year, it increased Rs. 32.4 billion in the 2013/14 financial year,” he said referring to the documents.
The losses continued to Rs. 16.4 billion in the 2014/15 financial year, Rs 12.6 billion in the 2015/16 financial year, and Rs. 28.9 billion in 2016/17.