THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) is set to circulate a new version of the five peso coin to address confusion with other New Generation Currency (NGC) coins as well as a new P20 coin.

In a statement on Monday, the central bank said the “enhanced” P5 coin will “make it more distinct from other denominations in the NGC Coin Series” released last year.

“The changes were based on studies on the design, security features, and specifications of the new coins,” it said.

The BSP will also circulate a P20 coin in 2020 following a ceremonial launch scheduled in December.

“A study conducted by the University of the Philippines reveals that the 20-Piso banknote is the most-used denomination for payments across the country. Because of this, the 20-piso banknote is easily rendered unfit for circulation and returned to the BSP for replacement,” the central bank said.

“As such, the issuance of a coin in lieu of a banknote is more cost efficient in terms of currency production in the long run,” the BSP added.

BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno earlier said the decision to issue a P20 coin was in consideration of production costs.

“Very expensive ‘yung P20 kasi after six months wala na eh. Papalitan mo na agad. ‘Yun ang pinakamaraming paper bills actually na pini-print (The P20 bill is expensive because they are usually unfit for circulation after six months. You have to phase them out already. This is the bill that we print the most),” Mr. Diokno said at an event last month.

The BSP chief said coins last “at least five times longer” than banknotes.

The BSP said official photographs and specifications of the P20 coin will be presented by BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno during its December launch.

“Nevertheless, the latest addition to the NGC Coin Series shall retain major elements of the 20-Piso banknote. The design and features of the new 20-Piso coin shall make it easily distinguishable from the rest of the denominations in the NGC Coin Series,” it said.

The central bank said the P20 coin will co-exist with its bill version as legal tender.

“The 20-Piso banknote shall be gradually removed from circulation through natural attrition,” the BSP added. — LWTN