“Convertibility of Ez Cash with M Cash in final stages”
The convertibility of EZ Cash with M Cash is in the final stages of completion. Both platforms have been adamantly pushing the digital transformation which would bring banking services to those in the population still using feature phones.
Both systems are 100% backed by bank deposits and are yet to show any serious failures.
Given the digital trail left behind and the capacity for real-time monitoring of the system, there is limited scope to use these services for money laundering or other illegal activity. Further, the tight limits placed on the usage have meant that it would be more effort for an entity to use the services for the purpose of money laundering.
Dialog Axiata Group Chief Digital Services Officer Renuka Fernando said, “I understand convertibility to mean the interoperability of Ez Cash with M Cash and other bank deposits. We have gone to the regulator with very comprehensive documents on how this will work.” Fernando was speaking recently at a Dialog Axiata Investor Conference. As the IMF negotiations reach their final stages there is more scope for the leadership of the Central Bank to push forward a digital agenda for the banking sector.
All issues pertaining to the implementation of the proposal have been ironed out. There has been unanimity between the two operators on how the proposal should be implemented in line with international best practices. Fernando said, “There have been several iterations of questions that have come back from the regulator and we are now adamantly awaiting the approval to begin services.”
An individual with inside knowledge of the payments regulation by the Central Bank noted that it is an easy step for the regulator to take in order to increase digital penetration into the country.
He said that Sri Lanka lagged behind most other nations in the implementation of either higher-end services like Apple Pay or lower-end services like Mobile Cash. He said delaying approval would be a difficult stance to reconcile with the digital ethos of the government and regulator.
There are over 3 million users of Ez Cash with over 50 million transactions being made daily. The payment system facilitates transacting between the The Central Bank has already granted Dialog Axiata the Ez Banking Agency services. Fernando said, “We now have the license given by the CBSL to offer agency banking across our partner network. Banks can come in and collect deposits into savings accounts through these Dialog Ez Banking retailers.” TP