By Melissa Luz T. Lopez, Senior Reporter

THE CENTRAL BANK is looking to release new coin designs within the year, but will drop the 10-centavo coin from the denominations.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Diwa C. Guinigundo said on Friday that the design for the new coins are expected to come out by end-2017, along with its initial release to the public.

“In due time the design will be rolled out… [we target] before the end of the year,” Mr. Guinigundo told reporters on the sidelines of a press briefing on Friday. “Circulation can also happen at the same time but in a limited capacity.”

Previously, the central bank was targeting a 2019 release of new coin designs, which comes years after the BSP released the New Generation Currency series for bills in 2010.

The BSP has the sole authority to issue money for general use. Central banks regularly change their bills and coins as a guard against fake money.

The central bank official added that the new set of designs will exclude the 10-centavo coin, in line with plans to rationalize the volume of coins produced in terms of its wide use. To be retained are the one-centavo, five-centavo, 25-centavo, P1, P5, and P10 denominations.

The current coin designs have been in use since 1995.

Mr. Guinigundo said the new coins will carry additional security features as a guard versus counterfeiting, and will also follow a demonetization schedule similar to the gradual phase-out of the old design banknotes.

“It is more challenging to demonetize coins than banknotes. We will have to physically get them and collect them and do something with them,” Mr. Guinigundo said, noting that it was easier to dispose of old bills via shredding.

All bills carrying the 1985 design have lost their value following the June 30 deadline set by the BSP to get these replaced before banks and central bank offices nationwide. The old notes could not be used for daily transactions since Jan. 1, 2016, or five years after the new design was released.

The central bank prints bills and mints coins at its Security Plant Complex along East Avenue in Quezon City.

At present, the New Generation Currency has been the designated money for general circulation in denominations of P20, P50, P100, P200, P500, and P1,000.

Once the new coin designs are released, these will be used in general circulation alongside the old coins before these are demonetized by the central bank.