ComBank and HNB tie-up with WKFS to implement IFRS in Sri Lanka

6 April 2015 06:47 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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By Dulasha Hettiarachchi
Commercial Bank PLC and Hatton National Bank (HNB) recently joined hands with Walters Kluwer Financial Services (WKFS) and its local partner Providence Holdings (Pvt) Ltd to implement International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
The globally accepted IFRS solutions of WKFS would in the process deliver the latest financial reporting standards. It is pioneered by Commercial and Hatton National Banks, creating history in the world of Sri Lankan banking.
WKFS which is one of the largest organizations providing banking and financial reporting software solutions worldwide while Providence is a leading service provider of software solutions with almost 10 years of experience in integrated systems.
“Two banks signing at the same time is a historical moment,”said WKFS Managing Director Chris Puype.
“Stepping to international accounting standards is a big decision as it helps create global transparency and gain access to global capital markets. It is also an essential aspect for the growth of Sri Lankan economy in the long run,” stressed Puype.
“IFRS in important for both the banks as we are now challenging the status core and not being hesitant to venture into new areas” added the HNB Managing Director/CEO Jonathan Alles.
Providence Holdings (Pvt) Ltd Director Dr. Vaz Gnanam said that they saw benefits in bringing IFRS to Sri Lanka.
Puype in the meantime appreciated the work of the banking industry of Sri Lanka. “One of the best things about the banking community of Sri Lanka is, they take time to make decisions, but when they do it is a big one.”
He also spoke about the importance of always adapting to the changes of the international accounting standards. “Together with Providence we have been organizing conferences and workshops about informing the financial community about the implications of IFRS at an annual basis” said Chris talking about the measures taken by WKFS along with Providence Holdings in the past.
“We are not just selling the system and walking away, we have an obligation, we are safeguarding the financial industry and it is our responsibility to ensure that the system always correspondents to the changes happening in terms of risk, finance or compliance” he further added while reassuring.
Addressing the gathering Alles also spoke about the trust they have invested in WKFS towards the successful implementation of the project following the singed agreement.
 “It is in your interest to make this an absolute beacon of a project, other bankers might even get on board during the implementation” Alles told Puype.
“It wasn’t the easiest thing to zero in on, it was a moving target for the last two years in terms of exactly what we wanted,” he stated.
He also spoke also about the necessity of a local partner. “The reason as to why we have a local partner involved is because we need commitment and support there are changes we anticipate over the next 3-5 years”. 
“I look forward to meticulous action planning timely implementation of the project so that starting from 2016 we will be fully on IFRS” he concluded.
Commercial Bank Managing Director Jegan Durairatnam said “IFRS is no more a choice but a given, to us automation is a must and the fact that it brings credibility to our numbers is the most important part of the agreement”
However the when the amount invested in the project was questioned by the media, Durairatnam stated it to be a “reasonable price”. 
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