Sri Lanka’s Central Bank to adopt new digital currency by end of 2024

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka plans to introduce a digital currency by the end of this year, according to officials who addressed a parliamentary committee on Friday. 

During the committee meeting, Central Bank representatives stated that the process of introducing ‘Lanka Pay’ and ‘Central Bank Digital Currencies’ is already underway and both systems are expected to be launched by the year’s end.

The Ways and Means Committee, chaired by MP Patali Champika Ranawaka, had convened to discuss matters related to online payments in Sri Lanka. One of the key concerns raised was the lack of a financial registry in Sri Lanka, which results in approximately 45% of financial transactions taking place without proper regulation.

MP Ranawaka proposed the extension of the QR code system, currently used in fuel sales, to financial services. Additionally, he suggested that government agencies such as the Inland Revenue Department, Excise Department, and Customs should adopt online payment systems, with a particular focus on utilizing blockchain technology.

 The Central Bank officials were requested to conduct a study on the online payment systems in countries like India and Bangladesh and submit a report within two weeks for further consideration.