In SBI Sri Lanka: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday inaugurated the State Bank of India (SBI) branch in Trincomalee, Sri Lanka. SBI has been in Sri Lanka for 159 years. SBI is one of the oldest banks out there. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today inaugurated the branch of State Bank of India in Trincomalee during her official visit to Sri Lanka, the Finance Ministry said in a post on Twitter.
After the inauguration, Sitharaman interacted with the officials of the new branch and distributed the passbooks to the new customers and also filled the visitor’s book in Trincomalee, Sri Lanka. The ministry said that apart from SBI in-branch operations in Sri Lanka, SBI Sri Lanka is growing its business through a robust digital platform through the YONO app and online banking. Also, SBI Sri Lanka is playing an important role in supporting corporates in international trade.
SBI helped extend a $1 billion credit line to Sri Lanka during Sri Lanka’s economic crisis. Sri Lanka’s Eastern Province Governor Senthil Thondaman, Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Gopal Bagle and SBI Chairman Dinesh Khara were also present at the inauguration ceremony.
SBI completed its first non-dollar transaction with Sri Lanka in March. Payment for exports was made in Sri Lankan rupees as India wanted to bring into the system those countries that lacked the US dollar. The move came as Sri Lanka faced its worst economic crisis since its independence due to a dollar shortage. Sri Lanka’s foreign exchange reserves stood at $2.1 billion at the end of January.