Sri Lankan government to change laws to assist the growth of tech industry by 2020
A document on Sri Lanka’s export strategy has reportedly stated that the government is aiming at changing laws so that international payments systems like PayPal could be used to receive payments by tech sector workers by 2020.
The document on the tech industry included in Sri Lanka’s National Export Strategy is reportedly based on outsourced activities and growth is expected to depend on clearing several regulatory bottlenecks including restrictions to international online payment systems like Pay Pal.
“Restricted access to international online payment system such as Pay Pal hinders businesses’ abilities to grow globally, due to pending e-payment regulations,” the tech export strategy document has stated.
“No guidelines exist to implement the Electronic Transaction Act, No. 19 of 2006 (ETA 2006) at the institutional level to institute electronic solutions, including e-payment, e-signature, e-documents and tracking.”
According to reports, while it is possible at the moment to make payments through Paypal via credit cards but payments cannot be made into bank accounts.
Most Sri Lankan businesses, however, have access to smaller international gateways such as 2Checkout and Skrill (formerly called Moneybookers).
“Existing restrictive rules are also applied to foreign exchange, including those relating to employee share option schemes where it is mandatory to make a deposit in an foreign exchange earners account (FEEA) to receive or make a payment in a foreign currency,” the strategy document is quoted as saying in a local media report.
The National Export Strategy has reportedly proposed that the Central Bank of Sri Lanka develop additional instruments to facilitate the exchange of money digitally by end March 2020.
The Sri Lankan government is very much focused on developing the country’s ICT sector. Already many initiatives to improve the sector have been formulated with the assistance of the private sector. The country is also looking at achieving a target of billions of dollars in earnings through ICT exports. The Digital Infrastructure Ministry in the country is also working towards the promotion of digital platforms and an e-economy. Therefore, foreign businesses could explore investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’s ICT sector.
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