Saturday, June 10, 2023

LANKAQR launches its inaugural webinar series to educate citizenry on QR payments

Representing yet another key stride taken to ensure that Sri Lanka will be able to reap the benefits of a digital tomorrow, LANKAQR, a project initiative from the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL), recently launched its inaugural webinar series to educate the public on how LANKAQR intends to transform Sri Lanka into a less-cash society.

Moderated by Deputy Chairman of the Working Group of LANKAQR Implementation Mr. Randil Boteju, the first webinar was held in September, enlightened the general public on how LANKAQR will soon transform the digital payment ecosystem in the country.

Mr. D Kumaratunge, Assistant Governor of the CBSL, was one of the change-makers who participated in the session to deliver a general overview on LANKAQR and how it functions along with the benefits of LANKAQR, such as reduction of the cost of cash, convenience and the transparency of transactions, and many more. Kumaratunge also made comparisons with other countries in the Asian region that have implemented such technology.

Speaking of the technology behind LANKAQR and how it will pave the way for the digitalisation journey of Sri Lanka, panellist Mr. Channa De Silva, CEO of LankaClear, explained that LANKAQR’s main objective is to facilitate contactless and cashless payments within the payment ecosystem using QR in Sri Lanka and ensuring that the technology behind QR is built with global standards along with the best security and interoperability.

Given that LANKAQR functions as a new way to make payments without the exchange of physical cash, Mr. K. V. K. Alwis, Director, Payments and Settlements Department of the CBSL provided insight on the importance of LANKAQR adaptation from a regulatory point of view. Alwis stated that mobile applications by financial institutions and telecommunication companies, have been certified with LankaClear (Pvt) Ltd as the network service provider in order to facilitate LANKAQR transactions.

If LANKAQR is to become a success in Sri Lanka, part of the responsibility rests with the role of partners in popularising QR and Digital Payments in the country. Mr. Thimal Perera, Chairman of the Working Group on LANKAQR elaborated further on this subject during the webinar. Perera highlighted that enthusiasm must exist on both sides by inviting consumers to download any LANKAQR-enabled app as well as merchants to enable LANKAQR payment acceptance for Sri Lanka to move towards a less-cash society and a digital economy.

It is expected that this webinar series will continue with discussions on multiple topics so that the public will be well informed about this technology and the many benefits that come with it. LANKAQR plans to engage with expert panels from other banks and non-banking financial institutions for each session.

LANKAQR is a digital payment solution that allows customers to make contactless payments directly to accounts of merchants or service providers, using any LANKAQR enabled payment app by any bank, financial institution, mobile service provider or any other partner. This contactless payment solution has elevated the user convenience and aims to drive the nation towards a less-cash society. LANKAQR is an initiative by the CBSL to increase financial inclusion and support the Digital Banking Roadmap in Sri Lanka.

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