As the year comes to a close, let’s all welcome the New Year with smiles to help us start anew. This brings me to a year ender post, a review on the news which made it to our headlines this 2011.
New Generation Banknotes
Earlier this January, the recently released New Generation Currency (NGC) banknote series came under fire for its designs as critics slammed the BSP for approving error-filled bills. Several errors have been pointed out and the notes have become the subject of derision in several social networking sites.
BSP later withdrew the notes and instead of revising the notes errors has instead re-issued the previous design and just changed the signatories to the current President of the Republic and the current Governor of the Central Bank, Benigno S. Aquino III and Amando M. Tetanco Jr. respectively. BSP still maintained that there were no errors in the bills.
Amid the flurry of negative comments being thrown, it has received great compliments from an international currency association last October. The NGC banknote series was a finalist for the Best New Banknote Series award at the 2011 Currency Conference of the US-based International Association of Currency Affairs (IACA) in Singapore. Even though the Ugandan Shilling, got the award for the Best New Banknote Series, the new 500-piso and 1,000-piso NGC bills, however, won the Best New Currency Feature award with its OVD security Patch.
Commemorative and coins
Bangko Sentral also hosted foundations of leading educational institutions in the country and released commemorative banknotes for each. These are: (a) University of Sto. Tomas Quadricentennial 200-piso, released last February, (b) University of the Philippines College of Law centenary 100-piso, released last July and (c) Ateneo’s Law School 75th year 100-piso commemorative overprint, released last August.
Our national hero, Jose Rizal was a big celebrity this year. Two commemorative items were released by BSP dedicated for Rizal’s 150th year. On June 19th, coinciding with Rizal’s Birthday, BSP launched a commemorative medal bearing Rizal’s image, his signature and his famous phrase “Adios Patria Adorada.” This December, BSP issued special edition legal tender 1-piso commemorative coins which bears Rizal’s image and the new BSP seal. It has the same size, weight and composition as the 1-piso in circulation. Rizal is on 1-piso coins today to make him more accessible to every Filipinos young and old.
In early December, Filipinos celebrated as Philippines hooked the Guinness world record for the longest line of coins. Attended by volunteers from different schools and private civic groups, they’ve created a 73.02-kilometer line of 25 centavo coins. BSP said that the event was part of the BSP’s endeavour to encourage the re-circulation of coins back into the system, amid the country’s coin shortage.
We are delighted to have the honour of seeing out the year with almost 300 members who liked us in Facebook, since April. To those who have valued our group and shared their insights to everyone, to those to have provided us a glimpse of their precious collections, we thank you all for your support and generosity. It would take all day to reel off each and every act that has come in over the year but we enjoyed each discussion and are always pleased to welcome old friends and newcomers alike.
We look forward to another interesting year ahead of us in 2012. We’d like to take this opportunity to wish each and every one of you a very happy and safe New Year!