ECONOMYNEXT - Sri Lanka is drawing up a legal framework to give comfort to users of a planned Colombo International Financial Centre, with technical support also coming from Dubai, Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said.
The Colombo International Financial Centre will include off-shore banking units of banks already operating in Sri Lanka as well as other related services.
He said local and foreign lawyers were helping develop the laws for the CIFC.
"We are getting the technical know-how from the Dubai International Financial Centre," Karunanayake told reporters in Colombo.
He said Sri Lankans who wanted to bring money in to the country also wanted laws to be clarified so that will not get into legal trouble later.
The DIFCs supervisory unit and legal arms have also promised support he said. Karunanayake said he visited the DIFC last week.
A special legal framework was needed to give comfort to customers, he said.
The DIFC has a court with UAE and international judges. The current Chief Justice is from Singapore and the Deputy Chief Justice is from the UK.
The CIFC which is expected to start in April will be housed in several floors in Colombo's World Trade Centre building at first.
Over 25 local banks with off-shore units had expressed in setting up offices at the centre he said.
A dedicated building to house the CIFC will be built as a public-private partnership he said.
In addition to banking the centre will also have insurance and support facilities like backroom operations and living and dining facilities for people who work and use the CIFC.
He said investors from several countries including Qatar and Singapore have expressed interest in participating in the project. (Colombo/Jan30/2016)