Sri Lanka to be on par with regional CDS in next 3 yrs: CDS head

May 13, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Central Depository System (CDS) is to be transformed into a developed depository equal with other depositories in the Asian region over the next three years, CDS chairman Vajira Kulatilaka said.

Kulatilaka who is also the chairman of Colombo Stock Exchange said the CDS lagged behind in the past two decades.

“It saddens me to note, that despite being a forerunner in this area in the 1990’s we have lagged behind in the past two decades mainly due to the unsettled conditions internally,” Kulatilaka said.

Modern depositories are using the latest technology to increase efficiency, minimize risk and reduce costs in order to support investors and market intermediaries.

Sri Lanka’s depository also implemented a new generation CSD in November 2014 replacing the 19 year old legacy system that used since 1991.

The Central Depository in the island nation is among one of the first to be established in Asia, way back in 1991.

“Coincidentally, I was involved in the setting up of our CSD not in the capacity of a stock exchange official but being part of the USAID advisory team that set up the CSD under a USAID project.” Kulatilaka said.

He was speaking at the cross training seminar of the Asia-Pacific Central Securities Depository Group (ACG) held in Colombo.

The event which is the first of its kind for CDS saw a participation of 95 representatives from depositories across the region, the highest number of participants seen at an ACG event.

ACG was formed in 1997 as an informal international organization with the objective to facilitate the exchange of information and to promote mutual assistance among member securities depositories and clearing organizations in the Asia Pacific region.