Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday inaugurated the second State Bank of India branch in Jaffna, which will cater to emerging business potential in the Northern Provinces of Sri Lanka.
The finance minister had inaugurated another SBI branch in Trincomalee on November 2.
"The Finance Minister appreciated that SBI became the first foreign Bank in Sri Lanka to successfully launch pathbreaking direct LKR-INR trade. This initiative has gained momentum and found currency among local corporates, besides giving vital support to the Sri Lankan economy by giving an option to importers of Sri Lanka without dependency on the US Dollar," the finance ministry said in a post on X.
Being the oldest bank in Sri Lanka, SBI is steadily scaling up its remittance services by leveraging a strong digital platform, which includes the SBI Sri Lanka YONO app and online banking, alongside its traditional in-branch operations, it said.
During her last day of the three-day visit to Sri Lanka, Sitharaman also visited the Jaffna Cultural Centre and Jaffna Public Library.
"The foundation stone of the Jaffna Cultural Centre building was laid by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in March 2015, during the first such visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Jaffna," another post said.
The Jaffna Cultural Centre, a state-of-the-art facility to foster arts and promote cultural pursuits in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka, was built with Indian grant assistance of $11 million.
Since then, the iconic center has enabled the people of Jaffna to enjoy various local and international cultural performances while also serving as a hub for training, instruction and education in a variety of cultural disciplines, it said.