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LankaClear celebrates a decade of CITS

LankaClear (Pvt) Ltd., the company that operates LankaPay - the National Payment Network of Sri Lanka and functions under the supervision and guidance of the Central Bank, celebrated the 10th anniversary of launching its Cheque Imaging and Truncation System (CITS) recently.

CITS handles all the domestic interbank rupee cheque clearings in the country.


Channa de Silva

Anil Amarasuriya

Cheque truncation is the process that converts a physical cheque into a substitute electronic form (digital image based) for transmission to the paying bank. This process eliminates cumbersome physical presentation of the cheque, which saves time and processing costs.

With the introduction of CITS in 2006, Sri Lanka became the first in South Asia and the second in the world to role out a world-class payment and settlement infrastructure to enable nationwide cheque clearance on T+1 basis. This has brought down the clearing cycle to one working day from a previous three to five day period due to the elimination of physical movement of the instrument. This has also enabled the banks to offer extended time for their customers to submit cheques, which provides greater convenience to all banking customers.

Chairman, LankaClear, Anil Amarasuriya, said, "We are confident that with a host of convenient, affordable and secure electronic payment modes to be introduced in near future, we will continue to be a trailblazer in the payment and settlement arena which in turn will transform the lives of people whilst ushering the country towards a paperless economy."

General Manager/CEO of LankaClear, Channa de Silva said, "Even though we started as a cheque clearing house, we have moved onto further expanding our services by establishing LankaPay National Payment Network where the newest service being offered is real time interbank fund transfer." "With all these electronic payment instruments going live, we anticipated the cheque volumes to go down, however contrary to our expectations, the volumes have increased. North and East provinces have recorded the highest percentage volume growth for cheques compared to rest of the country," he said."

After the war, the public in these areas began depositing their money into bank accounts rather than keeping cash with them, thus, the possible reason for growth," de Silva said.

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