December 2, 2022

The purchasing power of your paper bill does not decrease even if it is converted into coins, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas clarified.

In a recent virtual media lecture, BSP Acting Deputy Director for Currency Policy and Integrity Department Nenette Malabrigo said paper bills that have a coin version are both legal tender and have the same purchasing value.

Currently, the P20 has a paper and a coin version. Malabrigo said the central bank develops coins using lower denominations of money as these are sturdier compared to paper bills.

Malabrigo discouraged the public from keeping newly-minted coins as souvenir items and instead spend these to keep them in circulation.

“Please use our coins so its purpose can be served – as a medium of exchange,” she said.

The Philippines does not have a law yet defining what constitutes coin hoarding but Malabrigo hopes Congress will soon pass a law penalizing the hoarding of coins.

To maintain the circulation of money, Malabrigo also asked the public to protect the integrity of the currencies by refraining from folding, crumpling, writing on, and stapling paper bills, or denting coins.

She said the only time these coins should be out of circulation is due to natural attrition.

To avoid the destruction of money such as documented cases where these were eaten by termites or were accidentally burned, Malabrigo has encouraged the public to deposit their money in banks. Not only will these earn interest, these too are insured, and are kept safely so as not be exposed to the elements or insects.

On March 2018, the BSP released the New Generation Currency (NGC) coin series comprised of the P10, P5, P1, 25-centavo, five-centavo, and one-centavo coins featuring national heroes Apolinario Mabini in the P10 coin, Andres Bonifacio in the P5 coin, and Jose Rizal in the P1 coin, a stylized three stars and a sun in the 25-, five- and one-centavo, the BSP logo, and endemic flora.

Last December 2019, the BSP released the new P20 NGC coin and the enhanced P5 NGC coin with nine sides. Malabrigo said the nine-sided P5 coin was the BSP’s response to public observation that the P5 and P1 coins looked and felt the same.

“We enhanced the coin’s features to avoid confusion,” Malabrigo said, adding both the nine-sided coin and the 2018 coin are legal tender. – Rimaliza A. Opiña