Severe economic crisis, no petrol, riots with deaths
Can Swiss still travel to Sri Lanka?
Sri Lanka is experiencing a devastating financial crisis. It is no longer possible to import basic commodities such as fuel and food in sufficient quantities. There are frequent protests that claim people’s lives. Should the Swiss travel to Sri Lanka?
Publication date: 11:49 am
Updated: 2:40 PM
Sri Lanka is experiencing a devastating financial and economic crisis. The island nation is so indebted that it can no longer import important commodities such as food, medicine, fuel and gas in large quantities. Police and armed soldiers are currently guarding the gas stations. Resentment among the population is enormous.
On Wednesday, doctors and bankers took to the streets and marched in protest, calling on the government to find a quick solution. Recently, violent unrest claimed several lives and injured hundreds. Crime in the island nation has been on the rise for weeks.
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned in May after violent protests over the economic crisis. His successor, Ranil Wickremesinghe, has hinted that the country may have to buy crude oil from Russia. He also did not rule out accepting more financial aid from China in light of the economic crisis.
EDA is monitoring the situation
Sri Lanka is in crisis – and this has an impact on the Swiss. The island country is a popular holiday destination, and in winter the airline Edelweiss flies directly to the capital, Colombo. The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) is monitoring the situation in Sri Lanka. “Accordingly, the travel advisory has been gradually revised since the beginning of the year and has drawn attention to the prolonged deterioration of the supply and security situation,” the Department of Foreign Affairs said when asked by Blake.
Manta Reisen, the leading Swiss specialist in Indian Ocean affairs, was able to deliver and implement the Sri Lanka program with virtually no restrictions. “Both beach holidays and hotels visited in the interior of the country are open and welcome guests as usual. However, the number of visitors is now low in the off-season,” says spokesman Markus Flick.
Local focal points will not affect the sights. “Our local agency keeps itself abreast of daily events such as demonstrations,” says Flick. The capital, Colombo, is avoided. “The length of stay in Colombo was minimal on our travels even before the disturbances – that is, arrival and departure.”
Manta Raisin is accommodating due to the current situation. “For a few weeks now, we’ve been giving customers the option to take booked, postpone, or even cancel flights for free,” says a Flick spokesperson. Sri Lanka is also still on the program at Hotelplan and Tui Suisse. So holidays in the island nation are still possible – albeit with some restrictions. (Neem/No)
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