Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas introduces its Coin Deposit Machines as a stop-gap measure to ending the artificial coin-shortage in the nation. Photo courtesy of Business Mirror.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) managed to reclaim P12.5 million in assorted coins into circulation following the installation of ten coin deposit machines (CoDMs) in selected shopping malls across Luzon since June 20.
Through the aid of partnership with Filinvest Lifemalls Corp., Robinsons Supermarket Corp., and SM Retail, Inc., the central bank initially arranged four CoDM units, where two can be found at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City, one in Robinsons Place Ermita in Manila, and one in Festival Mall in Muntinlupa City.
Others were stationed all over SM City Bicutan, SM City Bacoor, SM City San Lazaro, SM City North Edsa, SM City Fairview, and Robinsons Place Galleria Ortigas.
According to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Bernadette Romulo Puyat, an additional 15 units from a US supplier will complete the anticipated initial deployment of 25 CoDMs. Such a number of machines is expected to cater to the high demands of the public.
“It is amazing how consumers adopted the use of the (CoDMs) over such a short period,” the official said in an interview.
With this project, the BSP intends to solve the artificial coin shortage existing in few regions and to guarantee the suitable and legal tender money is easily accessible for use by the general public.
In addition, the central bank added the program also encourages the adoption of digital payments and enhances financial inclusion by providing the opportunity to credit the value of deposited coins to e-wallets.
For over-the-counter transactions, the value of coins placed in CoDMs may be converted into a shopping voucher or credited to the depositor's e-wallet account. Currently, customers can only credit the exact amount deposited to their GCash e-wallets. The BSP is still seeking to include Maya and other issuers of electronic money in the project’s later phases.
“98% of deposits were put into customers' e-wallets, while the other 2% were turned into vouchers,” Romulo-Puyat remarked.
All denominations of the BSP Coin Series and New Generation Currency (NGC) Coins Series (i.e., 1-, 5-, 10-, and 25-Sentimo; and 1-, 5-, 10-, and 20-Piso) will be accepted by the CoDM. Mutilated and unfit coins will be rejected. Demonetized coins, foreign currency, and foreign objects like tokens will also be denied.
When the earliest coin deposit machines were introduced, former BSP Governor Felipe Medalla noticed Filipinos usually store “an unbelievable amount” of coins at home. This alone suggests there is an immense amount of money that is not being utilized by the economy.
Similarly, Robinsons Retail Holdings, Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Robina Gokongwei-Pe said the balance in the country’s monetary system will be disrupted once the coins are forgotten.
Because of CoDMs, coin owners can now use their metal currency without wasting time going to the bank to deposit it in their accounts.
The BSP is yet to determine if the project will be expanded to other regions and if the number of machines will be increased by June 2024.