BSP wants more banks to circulate 200-piso

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is waiving the service fees it apply to new and fit 200-piso banknotes to encourage banks and its clients to use it more.

“We’re incentivizing the use of 200-piso since we have a huge inventory,” said BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno on Monday.

Due to the unpopularity of the 200-piso or P200 as far as usage is concerned, the BSP’s inventory is “quite high” and suspending service fees is a way to manage the currency inventory, according to Monetary Board member, Bruce J. Tolentino. “We are trying to encourage banks and the people to use more P200 bills,” he added.

Based on a new memo, until further notice the BSP’s cash department will not charge banks the service fees on the P200 for deposit and withdrawal transactions. The BSP currently apply a service fee of P40 and P28, respectively, for new and fit P200 banknotes.

The P200 – which was first issued in 2002 —  is one of the least used banknote out of six denominations, with the P100, P50 and P20 as the most circulated bills. Even the P500 bills has more mileage while the P20 banknote is the most popular that BSP decided in 2019 to release its coin version.

The BSP last December increased the fees it charge on banks’ deposits and reinstating fees for withdrawals of cash transactions as part of its Clean Note and Coin Policy (CNCP) and to improve the circulation of fit banknotes.

Charging banks a service fee improves circulation of new or fit banknotes as well as retire unfit banknotes.

The BSP in 2019 strengthened its CNCP to discourage mutilation or defacement of banknotes and coins. Such acts are considered criminal and punishable by a fine of not more than P20,000 and/or imprisonment of not more than five years.