Nigeria unveils New Bank notes

Nigeria unveils New Bank notes.

Business Reporter

Images of the new N200, N500 and N1000 notes dominated the social media on November 24, 2022 , 29 days after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) unveiled timelines of the currency redesign.

Nigerians had the opportunity to see the new banknotes after they were unveiled by President Muhammadu Buhari during the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The unveiling came three weeks ahead of December 15 earlier scheduled for its release, just as calls for extension of the deadline intensified.

Expressing delight that the redesigned currencies are printed by the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting (NSPM) locally, President Buhari said features of the new notes would make them difficult to forge.

At the unveiling, which preceded FEC meeting, the President defended his approval for the exercise, saying: ‘’The new banknotes will help the apex bank design and implement better monetary policy objectives.”

He commended the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele and his team, as well as NSPM “for working tirelessly to make the currency redesign a reality and for printing the new naira notes within a comparatively short time.”

Acknowledging that international best practice requires central banks and national authorities to issue new or redesigned currency notes every five to eight years, the President noted that it was almost 20 years since the last major redesign of the country’s local currency was done.

He said: ‘’This implies that the naira is long overdue to wear a new look. A cycle of banknote redesign is generally aimed at achieving specific objectives, including but not limited to: improving security of banknotes, mitigating counterfeiting, preserving the collective national heritage, controlling currency in circulation, and reducing the overall cost of currency management.

‘’As is known, our local laws – specifically the CBN Act of 2007 – grants CBN the power to issue and redesign the naira. In line with this power, CBN approached me earlier this year to seek my permission to embark on a currency redesign project. I considered all the facts and reasons presented before me by the Central Bank.

‘’There was an urgent need to take control of currency in circulation and to address the hoarding of naira banknotes outside the banking system, the shortage of clean and fit banknotes in circulation, and the increase in counterfeiting of high-denomination banknotes. It is on this basis that I gave my approval for the redesign of the N200, N500 and N1000 banknotes.

‘’While this may not be apparent to many Nigerians, only four out of the 54 African countries print their currencies in their countries, and Nigeria is one. Hence, a majority of African countries print their currencies abroad and import them the way we import other goods, ” he concluded.

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