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Online direct sales hampered by lack of PayPal access

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  • Fin. Min. assures 

pushing Central Bank to expedite necessary changes 

The Finance Ministry yesterday acknowledged that they were still awaiting a decision by the Central Bank to allow PayPal accounts to be activated in Sri Lanka, allowing locals to receive money.

Despite the Finance Ministry enabling Sri Lankan companies to have direct e-commerce transactions on Monday, the effort cannot be practically implemented without the Central Bank allowing locals to receive money via PayPal. 

“We are still in discussions with the Central Bank and have called on them to expedite the effort because we understand how important it is.  We are confident that it will be done sooner rather than later,” said Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera.   

The Finance Ministry has set up a regulatory framework enabling Sri Lankan companies to initiate Business to Consumer (B2C) direct e-commerce transactions with overseas customers as per a Budget 2018 proposal. 

Sri Lankan customers do enjoy this B2C e-commerce facility via eBay and other trading platforms but not vice versa. Accordingly, hereafter companies or exporters in Sri Lanka can send goods in any number worth a maximum $ 3,000 each without submitting a CUSDEC application to Sri Lanka Customs. 

However, at the end of the particular month the exporter has to submit one CUSDEC application to Sri Lanka Customs covering all transactions, the statement released by the Finance Ministry said. 

The regulation issued by the Ministry of Finance will govern any approved online trading platform done by B2C operations by a Board of Investment-approved hub enterprise, B2C operations by a Board of Investment-approved enterprise, B2C operations by any other registered business enterprise and B2C operations by any individual registered exporter.

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