Central Bank Governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe yesterday said that Indian tourists to Sri Lanka pay in their currency Indian Rupee (INR).
He reiterated that making INR a designated currency by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka enables not only trade settlement between the two countries in INR but also Indian tourists coming to Sri Lanka can use INR for transactions.
Dr. Weerasinghe also expressed support for the linking digital payment interfaces between the two countries during his keynote at the webinar on ‘Economic Scenario of Sri Lanka: Current Status and Way Ahead’, organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
During the first 23 days of April India topped the tourist inflow reflecting 17% or 13,839 whilst year to date Indians accounted for second highest 14% or 60,271 arrivals.
Remarks by the CBSL Governor come a day after Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena launched a Special Cover commemorating Sita Temple (Seetha Eliya) in Nuwara Eliya. The Temple is believed to mark the place of Ashok Vatika in the epic Ramayana and is a great hit with Indian tourists, as part of Ramayana circle which the Sri Lankan Government is seeking to promote. Tourists from India traditionally constitute the largest segment of international tourists coming to Sri Lanka.
Delivering a special address the Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay highlighted the areas of prospective economic cooperation between India and Sri Lanka. He particularly focused on connectivity, IT, renewable energy and tourism.