The Monetary Board of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka is close to starting development of a blockchain platform expected to speed the processing of bank users’ ID information.
The Monetary Board has now shortlisted three software development firms to be tasked with designing a proof-of-concept (PoC) know-your-customer (KYC) platform, local news source the Daily Mirror Online said Thursday.
The final decision and the start of development are expected “shortly,” said D. Kumaratunge, Central Bank director of payments and settlements, at a Tuesday event.
The KYC platform is planned to allow the banking sector and the government to share and update bank customer data in real time on a blockchain.
Kumaratunge said several banks have given their consent to join the project.
The open call was on a voluntary basis; 36 national and international candidates applied for the project last November. One of the three finalists is a foreign tech firm.
The development of the system is expected to take anywhere between six and nine months to complete.
The project is expected to allow banks to onboard new customers without delays for manual processing, as well as save costs associated with traditional paper-based methods of verifying documents.
Sri Lanka has been taking steps to improve its financial sector to meet international standards.
In October 2019, the nation was removed from the Financial Action Task Force’s anti-money laundering/counter the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) “strategic deficiencies” blacklist, to which it had been added in 2017.