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Central Bank to introduce digital currency by the end of this year

13 January 2024 08:31 am - 26     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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By Yohan Perera and Ajith Siriwardana

Colombo, Jan 13 (Daily Mirror) -  The Central Bank is to introduce a digital currency for Sri Lanka by the end of this year, its official told a top committee in Parliament yesterday.

“The exercise of introducing ‘Lanka Pay’ and ‘Central Bank Digital Currencies’ has already begun. The two systems will be launched by the end of this year,” Central Bank officials informed the Ways and Means Committee in Parliament. Central Bank officials were called before the committee to discuss issues pertaining to online payments in Sri Lanka. Accordingly, the Chairman of Ways and Means Committee Patali Champika Ranawaka inquired about the regulation of online payment systems in Sri Lanka,” Parliamentary Media Unit (PMU) said.

It was revealed that the absence of a financial registry in Sri Lanka results in 45 per cent of financial transactions going without being regulated.

MP Ranawaka proposed that QR code system which is used in fuel sales should be extended to financial services as well. Also, he proposed that the Inland Revenue Department, Excise Department and Customs should adopt online payment systems. The focus was made on using blockchain systems for the purpose.

Ways and Means Committee requested the Central Bank officials to carry out a study on the online payment systems that are being implemented in countries such as India and Bangladesh and submit a report within two weeks.

State Minister Lasantha Alagiyawanna, Sisira Jayakody, MPs Ashok Abeysinghe, Charitha Herath and Ishak Rahuman participated in the committee meeting.


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  Comments - 26

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  • ANTON Saturday, 13 January 2024 08:51 AM

    DIGITAL TAXES AS WELL............

    Jude Saturday, 13 January 2024 08:57 AM

    What nonsense!! HALF of the population lives on one meal a day !! Hey find ways to increase GDP, and to create Employment

    Neo Saturday, 13 January 2024 11:20 AM

    Are you eating one meal a day? If not don't speak on behalf of others.

    Onlooker Saturday, 13 January 2024 12:13 PM

    Neo do not be selfish - who then should those who have a meal a day turn to for their plight while you enjoy 3 meals a day.

    Dee Saturday, 13 January 2024 03:44 PM

    Which country are you talking of? Yes in social media one meal a day. And HALF? Have you done a census?

    karuna nathan Saturday, 13 January 2024 06:07 PM

    If you want people to stop hiding their earning and pay the righ tax for their whole income then digital transaction is the way forward. this can help people having one meal a day to get a better life. people should educate themself before opposing every plan that come by.

    Jayampathi Saturday, 13 January 2024 09:34 AM

    Even RMV should have such a facility. It is sad that the RMV Werahara does not have an ATM machine or does not accept card payments.

    Tariq Saturday, 13 January 2024 10:08 AM

    Before introducing the latest CBDC the Central Bank must check out on some of these Banks in Sri Lanka because when you swipe both the Credit and Debit cards with the latest Tap

    Ram Saturday, 13 January 2024 10:15 AM

    This will help to reduce the printing of money. Instead the Bank will adjust the books when it pump in more money to the circulation

    Jehan Saturday, 13 January 2024 11:21 AM

    This is exactly why this country can't be developed. Too many arm chair critics who does not produce a thing but spend the day giving advices to all and everyone.

    Rob Saturday, 13 January 2024 12:37 PM

    Make all government sectors digital Transportations stop using cash this will give government financial system to reconcile monthly basis to audit. Scams mismanagement corruption wil be reduced and have control over seeing before its toolate..go digital no cash .stop the cash

    Smh Saturday, 13 January 2024 01:25 PM

    Like it or not, everything is going digital and paper currency is nearly obsolete worldwide. Cold hard cash is no longer king. Lanka either has to keep up or be isolated. There are risks to going digital and hopefully Sri Lanka is ready for it with a secure digital transacting system.

    Sam Silva Saturday, 13 January 2024 06:59 PM

    Thi will never happen with the crooks we have who governs our country and all other crooks who in favor to maintain a crooked government. Good luck.

    GC Saturday, 13 January 2024 04:30 PM

    I think many seem to have misunderstood this digital currency, something to which there is much resistance among the people in the West. It is a way of controlling the money one has and which the governments can control as they wish, preventing the use of money for something the government does not like (e.g. protests against it) because there is no cash and everything is just a number in a computer system. The commenters seem to be mistakenly talking about paying digitally using one's non-digital money. Wake up! The government seem to be implementing whatever the Masters ask them to do.

    Gota missed the chance! Saturday, 13 January 2024 04:53 PM

    If digital currency was in place, the 17 million rupees found at the President Gota's house unattended, could have been avoided. Oh! he missed the chance!

    Mohamed Burhan Saturday, 13 January 2024 08:03 PM

    This is absurd sir.You are telling this month January 2024 that you will start yourV so called Digital currency in December 2024 i.e.in 12 months!!may be some irresponsible would have made a hearsay Information.

    Che Saturday, 13 January 2024 08:18 PM

    Perhaps not a bad idea to condider. Like in so many countries where Commercial Banks have installed ATM's where people can purchase and sell crypto's using local currency.

    SLEx Saturday, 13 January 2024 08:30 PM

    I do not think most people in Sri Lanka including the comment thread understand what a CBDC is. Especially the first comment regarding taxes. Maybe research before spouting non sense. Great initiative on implementing CBDCs. Cheaper and faster transactions both inside and out of the country which include imports and exports. Better analytics, tracking and transparency of all the money as well.

    Jason Almeida Sunday, 14 January 2024 02:17 AM

    This is complete government control. CBDCs are fully programmable - government controlled digital currency. Can already some who have NOT researched the far reaching implications are commenting as it is a good thing. CBDCs are run on a digital wallet where ALL transactions will be tracked and monitored CENTRALLY. This is on IMF orders. Wake up people!

    Fred Sunday, 14 January 2024 05:01 AM

    Can someone in authority explain what this digital currency is and how it is going to be implemented. Many people in SL do not have bank accounts and operate on cash.Digital currency can also be programmed from what Iam aware. If so what are the implications. How will the system transition from paper to digital.What will back the digital currency or will it be just another IOU

    Mark of the Beast Sunday, 14 January 2024 05:54 AM

    CBDC together with a social credit system you are in for a total totalitarian regime. Keep cash alive ! Wake up people you dont know what's coming

    SLEx Sunday, 14 January 2024 06:12 PM

    Hahahaha. What on earth are you talking about? So Singapore is a totalitarian regime? Some of the most democratic countries are doing the same and they are totalitarian regimes as well. Mark of the beast? More like Mark of the town fool. Probably need to audit your finances. The only people against this would be people earning money illegally or people earning money who want to evade taxes.

    Binuka Sunday, 14 January 2024 08:48 AM

    Good movw Whether we like it or not after 10 years all countries will implement it. Let us start it early

    Soma Sunday, 14 January 2024 09:44 AM

    Government payments online is a must. One entity cuts off online payments at 5:00pm and then asks to pay penalties by cash after 5:00pm.

    Bandu Monday, 15 January 2024 03:16 AM

    What a bunch of jokers. First have a robust digital payment system. Increase internet access to people. Only 60% in SL has access to Internet.

    shifan Monday, 15 January 2024 04:59 PM

    A misinformed lot and idiots. We have a billion issues to resolve, but the attention is always to things that actually concern a handful. We will never learn or progress due to this fact alone


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