SEC-CSE Digitalization


The SEC-CSE joint Committee was an initiative by the SEC to commence the Digital Transformation of the capital market in Sri Lanka to enable every Sri Lankan to instantly access the Colombo Stock Market from anywhere.

The committee set out its broad agenda of Digitalization of the Stock Market with the key enablers outlined in the diagram.

The outcomes of the digitalization efforts of the committee over the last 3 months in Phase 1 is outlined in the table below that will create a strong digital infrastructure to ensure growth, access, education and content distribution that will move the market into a robust and efficient stock market system.

The committee will continue to bring innovative technology infrastructure to cover all segments of capital raising to fuel growth, innovation, and development through effective and efficient raising of patient capital to support the national agenda to support entrepreneurship and be an engine that facilitate new thinking.

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka has done a detailed study on the recommendation of the Task Force on Digitalization together with the Colombo Stock Exchange to establish futuristic rule changes to facilitate the entire Digitalization process and design the future of the entire capital Market System to build the “Next Generation Capital Market Technology Infrastructure” SEC-CSE Joint Committee

Mr. Naresh Abeysekera – SEC Commission Member &SEC/CSE Joint Digitalization Committee Chairman




Listed Company

Stock Broker

Stock Exchange (CSE)

Online CDS account opening in less than five minutes

“An end-to-end interactive investor on-boarding process has been designed to enhance the investment experience and to facilitate instant trading eliminating all manual processes for faster investment enablement from anywhere with a Sri Lankan NIC and Bank Account”

On line account opening to facilitate an enhanced investment experience for fast trading with the following features

Online account opening process will validate critical information like email and mobile numbers to establish a direct communication with investor

Enabling Stock Brokers to digitally acquire new investors through online account creation, digital content distribution and linking it to their own website and social media pages

Establish a direct link with the investor to distribute account statements electronically fast and easy

·   Digital On-Boarding


Online CDS Account Creation and End to End Investor Digital on-boarding with eKYC in  less than 5 minutes from anywhere


·   Bio Metric Authentication


Access via bio-metric identification for enhanced security


·  Automated NIC Verification (1st Time in Sri Lanka)


Direct automated NIC verification with Department of Registrar of Persons (DRP)


·   Interactive step-by-step account creation via email and SMS

·    Annual reports distribution


Availability, of email addresses to dispatch the annual reports, quarterly accounts and other materials in the prescribed manner of dispatching.

This will reduce compliance costs for listed companies

·      Electronic Dividends Payments


Availability of bank account details of the shareholders to pay dividends within 02 days after the date of payment. This will reduce compliance costs.


·   Virtual branches


Virtualization of broker branches without the need for physical branches


·   Digital Content


Direct distribution of broker research report and investor content at no cost


·   Social Media Integration


Ability to engage potential investors through social media and immediate online end-to-end CDS account creation


·      In-App messaging

Engage clients direct through CSE’s new app

·    CDS Statements


Ability to send the CDS monthly statements within few days


·   Digital Investor Interaction


Interact with the investor digitally through In-App messaging, SMS, or email


·    Investor Portfolio


In the next few months the launch of “e-connect” will give access to the investor to view their CDS account with other value added features like portfolio transfers electronically

Digital Interactive and Communication Services

“Communication with shareholders and investors have reached new heights in instant communication in multiple digital forms”

Instant Communication with the investor and shareholder in multiple digital forms

Fast digital annual report distribution


·      Shareholder distribution of annual reports through In-APP messaging and email distribution in minutes. Rules have been amended to accommodate any electronic form

Stock Broker-Client interactives can be now done digitally in multiple forms of communication for efficiency and ease including market updates and rule changes etc

·    Communicate with the Stockbrokers via the In-App

·    Ability to send the statements of accounts via email

·    Ability to send contract notes via email

·    The CDS generated automated SMS on transactions establishes more governance in the investment process as an independent third party confirmation that will help build the client broker relationship

Manual account statements and communications have been converted to full digital form


·  Monthly, quarterly and annual statements can be emailed, thus reducing the cost  of printing, stuffing and postage cost


·   Digital storage of securities account opening forms of securities accounts registered

·   SMS: CDS generated

Automated day end SMS transaction summary

Instant digital announcements of listed companies

·      All dividends, directors and any other company announcements can be made via In-App messaging and digital notifications instantly


·   In-App Messaging

All announcements, alerts and notification via In-App messaging




·      Email

CDS statements, broker statements, notifications and alerts




·     Annual Reports

Sent via email and In-App messaging through the new CSE APP




·      Siri and Alexa (AI Assistants)

The launch of interactive AI Assistants “Siri” and Alexa will be integrated to the database to check market movements through verbal interaction




Digital publishing of article and video content

“Digital content in article and video form can be listed in the new CSE to have all investment information including access to market data in the “Palm of the Investor Hand”

Information For Better Investment Decisions


Listed Company, Economic and International Market updated that has an impact for better informed investment decisions now in the “Palm of the

Investor Hand” via the new CSE App including the  following:

·      Investment Research Reports

·     listed Company CEO Interviews

·     Economic Updates

·     Central Bank Updates

·     Budget and Policy Updates

·     IPO Company Content

·     Market Data: Instant access to historic market information via the App that will facilitate better decisions

Digital Publishing of Listed

Company Content:


·    Content in Video Form and Article From can be published in the New CSE App on new company information, CEO interviews, Product launches, Strategic updates at no costs directly through the new CSE App to communicate directly with shareholders and investors in the single information repository. This in turn will reduce the compliance and investor relations costs to listed companies



Brokers to publish their investment content and research material for investors to access and make an informed better investment decision


· Ability to publish research material to create greater investor engagement


· Ability to use digital platforms targeting the potential and the existing investor communities


CSE to launch information services that will enable investor development for greater participation and better  informed investment decision making


·  SEC Educational You Tube Channel: Ability to publish educational materials via YouTube and other digital platforms to educate investors and interact with via feedback and comments to  build investor driven content

·   Listed Company CEO interviews for greater investor visibility

·    Economic and industry expert content investments based on fundamentals




·   Quarterly Updates of listed company’s


Any investor and shareholder updated that needs to be communicated with regards to the listed company can instantly be sent to the CSE and published in the new CSE app with investor alerts




Seated left to right: Mr. Rajeeva Bandaranaike – Chief Executive Officer-CSE, Mr. Manil Jayesinghe – SEC Commission Member, Mr. Naresh Abeysekera – SEC Commission Member &SEC/CSE Joint Digitalization Committee Chairman, Mr. Chinthaka Mendis -SEC Director General; Mr. Jayantha Fernando – CSE Board Member, Mr. Dilshan Wirasekara – CSE Board Member

First line standing left to right: Ms.Kaushalya Wijesiri – SEC, Ms. Sharmila Panditaratne – SEC, Mr. Randika Silva- SEC, Mr. Rasika Walpitagama – SEC, Mr. Prabash Wanigatunge- SEC, Dr. Harshana Peiris Suriyapperuma -SEC, Mr. Chandrakanth Jayasinghe –CSE, Mr. Renuke Wijayawardhane- CSE, Mr. Tushara Jayaratne –SEC

Second line standing left to right: Mr. Niroshan Wijesundere – CSE, Mr. Kaushal Siriwardena – CSE, Mr. Sheraj Obeyesekere – CSE, Ms. Koshila Alwis- CSE, Mr. Maalik Ibrahim- CSE, Mr. lndranath Karunasena- CSE, Mr. Nadeera Asanga Athukorale -CSE



The history of the Sri Lankan Stock Market dates back to late1896 counting almost 125 years of operations as one of the oldest stock markets in the world. Back in the day, Sri Lanka was the first Asian country to set up a fully automated Central Depository System (CDS). By 1997, the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) was one of the first countries in Asia to introduce an automated system for share transactions. However, unlike most markets in the region, the Colombo Stock Market has been rather slow to embrace new technology and innovation and move onto the next level of being able to perform all of its operations digitally.

The effects of this deficiency was greatly felt during the recent Covid-19 lockdown where it was not possible to have the market open for trading. In order to overcome any such eventuality and to ensure uninterrupted operations and improve market efficiency steps were taken by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC) to appoint a joint committee comprising of members of both the SEC and CSE to fast track the digitalization of end-to-end operations of the stock market. The digitalization of the stock market is the most significant achievement since the Automated Trading System was introduced way back in1997 and will result in a paradigm shift to its activities. This much needed sophistication will result in a huge boost to our market and lure more foreign and local investors.

The new process will offer existing and potential investors as well as all other stakeholders with a whole range of benefits including cost saving, convenience and speed to engage in the stock market activities. With the launch of the CSE mobile application today, the most innovative step will be the ability of an investor to open a CDS account from anywhere in the country and immediately commence trading. Investors will also have access to a wide array of real-time information through the mobile app and details of all transactions will be notified to them via a Short Message Service (SMS) without any cost. Dividends will be transmitted electronically to the bank accounts of account holders.

The resultant paperless market will see buy and sell statements, CDS statements, Annual Reports of Listed Companies etc being emailed to all clients. In the next phase, several new features will be added and amongst them will be a smart wallet for payments, e IPOs, e Rights, e-voting, artificial intelligence assistants and opportunity for investors to rate the quality of service offered by stockbroker firms through the mobile app where potential investors will have an opportunity to select a stockbroker firm based on such reviews.

I take this opportunity to acknowledge and commend the outstanding work done by the joint committee in facilitating the digitalization initiative within a very short period of time and in conclusion wish to express my gratitude to Hon. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa for his guidance and for gracing this occasion.

Mr. Viraj Dayaratne PC, Chairman


The key to success for any market is its ability to adapt to changing environments. Similar to many other spheres in the country, the local capital market too needs to reap the benefits of the digitalization in order to reach its fullest potential. The President’s vision of Digitalizing Sri Lanka has given the much-needed spur to drive the Country towards a digital era and thus has finally created the conducive environment to enable end-to-end digitalization of the Sri Lankan stock market which was heavily talked about in the recent past but failed in its implementation until now.

Given the fiscal and monetary impediments the economy is faced with as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is needless to mention the pivotal role that the private sector has to play in repositioning the growth trajectory of the country. Accordingly, the dire need for a robust capital market that will provide stimulus to the growth of the private sector is felt more than ever before.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as the apex regulator is entrusted with the profound task of spearheading the creation of a robust and sustainable capital market. The growth of a securities market in a country as a whole reflects the trust and confidence placed by both local and foreign investors about the prospects of that country.

We note with pleasure that Sri Lanka has made significant head way in the Doing Business Index of the World Bank and out of all the categories, protecting minority investors has received the best score of 28. This is a recognition of SEC’s work in relation to the protection of investor interest.

End-to-end digitalization of the local equity market that falls within the broad spectrum of developing the infrastructure of the capital market, is expected to increase the accessibility of the stock market to the entire community. We believe that this will help to enhance the financial literacy in the country that is currently lingering in the range of 35%. SEC recognizes the value of a close dialogue with the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) and all its other stakeholders.

SEC believes that together, SEC and CSE can foster a culture that goes beyond mere compliance. SEC is keen to facilitate initiatives with a focus on developing new products and market infrastructure to ensure that the securities market of Sri Lanka competes effectively with other markets by boosting fund flows to the country.

All the regulatory changes are now in place to facilitate the initiative. The initial phase comprises of digitalization of all core activities i.e. the investor will be able to conduct entire trade to settlement, full cycle digitally. This will enable the stock market to continue its operations during unprecedented events. Further, it encompasses the launch of the CSE mobile application that will bring the market to the investor’s palm.

Mr. Chinthaka Mendis