Bangko Sentral to start decommissioning old bills


The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will start withdrawing old bank notes from circulation – some dating back to 1985 – starting Jan. 1.

BSP Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo said in a briefing that the demonetization process for these bank notes would run from Jan. 1 until Dec. 31, 2015.

This means the public may still use the old bank notes for purchase of goods and services during the period, Guinigundo explained.

Consumers have until the end of 2016 to exchange their old bank notes for new generation currency bank notes at authorized banks and at BSP branches or offices nationwide.

“For overseas Filipinos who have in their possession (old) bank notes which could not be exchanged within the prescribed period, they may register online starting Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, 2015 through the BSP website,” Guinigundo said.


Overseas Filipinos will be given a year from their date of registration to exchange their old bank notes at BSP offices and branches.

Government institutions holding on to old bank notes such as those used as evidence in various cases may also write to the BSP Cash Department for a special exchange arrangement.

“Starting Jan. 1, 2017, (these old) bank notes that have not been exchanged shall no longer have any monetary value, and are considered demonetized,” Guinigundo said.

There are currently 729 million pieces of old bank notes amounting to P192 billion in circulation. Guinigundo said they make up about 25 percent of the total volume and about 26 percent of the total value of money in circulation.

The central bank in 2013 stopped printing old bank notes in favor of the new generation currency (NGC) bank notes launched in December 2010.

“Why do we need to demonetize from the perspective of the Bangko Sentral? We want to align with the practice of other central banks around the world which normally change the currency design every 10 years,” Guinigundo said, noting the old bank notes have been in use since 1985.

“Secondly, we want to safeguard the integrity of the Philippine bank notes, and this has something to do with security and our drive against counterfeiting,” he stressed.

“The NGC bank notes which were issued on Dec. 16, 2010 use new and enhanced security features to protect the safety of the public against counterfeiters,” Guinigundo said.

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