LankaClear, Sri Lanka’s national clearing house and the premier catalyst for facilitating the nation’s payment systems infrastructure, celebrated an important milestone since its inception in 2OO2 as it marks five years since the launch of the state-of-the-art Cheque lmaging and Truncation System – CITS.
Dedicated to enhancing the efficiency of the payment systems industry and taking it into a new era of dynamism and productivity, LankaClear introduced CITS in May 2005, making Sri Lanka the first country in the South Asian region and only the second in the world to install the highly progressive and state-of-the-art clearing system.
CITS is an image based cheque-clearing system which replaces the physical movement of cheques with electronic information flowing throughout the clearing cycle. The elimination of the need for the physical transfer of cheques for purposes of clearing greatly enhanced the security and efficiency of the clearing process, enabling banks to achieve next day clearing and cheque realisation as well as extending customer deadlines for cheque deposits for T+1 clearing.
Owned by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka and all commercial banks in the country, LankaClear is one of the most successful public-private partnerships in the country. Since its inception in 2002 following the divestment of the Sri Lanka Automated Clearing House (SLACH), the company has consistently brought economies of scale to the banking industry by combining the efficiency and dynamism of the private sector with the stability and security characterised by the public sector.
Administering a product portfolio centring round services to the banking industry, LankaClear offers a multitude of services designed to facilitate efficient payments. These include the Sri Lanka lnterbank Payment System (SLIPS) which is an online interbank electronic fund transfer system enabling the same day transfer of funds in a highly secure environment. The introduction of the US Dollar Clearing System has significantly expedited the realisation of US Dollar cheques and drafts, bringing tangible benefits to customers while significantly improving banking efficiency.
In addition, the company addressed the paramount need for utmost security in online transactions by incorporating a Certification Authority, shouldering the responsibility to provide digital security certificates for the financial sector. The provision of this service has eliminated the prohibitive dollar cost to banks of obtaining the certificate from foreign certificate service providers.
Through such services, LankaClear continues to exercise its mandate and reinforce its position as the nation’s premier provider of payment systems infrastructure by transferring the benefits of strategic investments and modernisation to the banking industry and general public alike.
To celebrate this significant milestone in their journey towards becoming Asia’s most trusted, secure and valued payment systems infrastructure facilitator, LankaClear hosted a cocktail reception on 31 May 2011 for its stakeholders. This occasion was graced by the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka as the Chief Guest.
Addressing an august gathering of Bankers, the Governor stressed the need for the financial institutions and LankaClear to introduce modern and efficient payment systems to meet the demands of a rapidly growing economy.
He emphasised that ideally the growth of the payment systems and infrastructure should precede the growth of the economy and expressed his confidence that LankaClear would take necessary steps for the timely implementation of the new payment infrastructures to facilitate the goal of doubling the per capita income by 2015.
The Governor, whilst congratulating LankaClear on the achievements during the last five years, assured the full support of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka on the introduction and development of new payment infrastructures in the country.