The Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will, today, commence the distribution of the New Naira notes to its branches across the country.
The Director of Currency Operations, Mr. Bello Umar, disclosed this, in Abuja, during yesterday’s Post-Monetary Policy Committee press briefing.
He said, “From Thursday, that is tomorrow (today), we will start distribution to CBN branches across the country. So that whenever we are set to launch, maybe at a later date, we already have the notes across the country.”
The new notes are expected to be in circulation as from December 15, and will circulate side-by-side with the old notes until January, 31 2023, when the latter would cease to be legal tender.
Mr. Umar, said, however, that the apex bank was concerned that the rush to deposit old notes has not yet been seen, as anticipated.
He revealed that as of Friday, last week, only N165 billion had been deposited by banks with the CBN and that even some of the banks with high customer-base records had not made any deposit.
Under the policy, the CBN expects to mop up about N2.7 trillion held outside the banking system, out of the N3. 2 trillion in circulation.
According to the director, “When we designed this policy, there was about N2.7 trillion outside the banking system, out of the N3.2 trillion in circulation. As at Friday last week, 18th November, the total deposit that we have received from the banks, was the sum of N165 billion. Which is still small.
“We are not seeing the rush. Some banks have not even made any deposits and some of them are banks with large customer-base. In fact, the Director Banking Supervision had to bring it to the notice of the Inter-Agency Committee, yesterday.
“It is a problem for us and we are hoping that it does not result in a stampede when we are getting close to the end of January.”
The director said that the CBN had extended its work days to Saturday and that the bank’s branches were opened to receive deposits from banks.
He added that the apex bank has also waived charges and removed all limits in terms of the amount of money that a customer could deposit in his account, adding that there was no reason for anyone to be afraid to deposit their monies in their accounts.
He warned that the January 31, 2023 deadline was sacrosanct and that members of the public should make sure they returned the three denominations (N200, N500 and N1, 000) before January 31, 2023 as all monies held in those denominations would Cease to be legal tender after that day. Vanguard Online report.
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