Sen. Binay asks BSP to temporarily stop issuing new ₱5 coins to 'avoid public confusion'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 27) — Sen. Nancy Binay on Wednesday asked the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to temporarily stop issuing new ₱5 coins in the wake of confusion over its similar design with current ₱1 coins.

In a statement, Binay said the new coins are causing "confusion" to the public.

"We welcome the change if it's an issue of security but the problem lies on the circulation where the new coins will co-exist with the ₱1, ₱5, and ₱10 coins that are now more widely used by the public," she said.

The new coins have been in circulation since the beginning of December. It has revolutionary hero Andres Bonifacio on one side and Philippine endemic plant Tayabak on the obverse, with improved anti-counterfeiting features.

The BSP will roll out a next batch in January.

However, the new ₱5 coin is almost the same size as the ₱1 coin. It also has a similar silver color.

Binay said some consumers have expressed confusion when handed the new coin

"It is best to keep an eye on those new five-peso coins. Lalo na doon sa mga nanunukli ng barya sa tricycle, jeep, tindahan at mga maliliit na negosyo. Sobrang nakakalito ang bagong limang-piso na halos magkasing hawig at laki lang ito ng piso," she said.

[Translation: It is best to keep an eye on those new five-peso coins, especially among those who give change when riding the tricycle, jeep, stores, and small businesses. The new five peso coin is very confusing. It's almost the same design and size as a one peso coin.]

She added, commuters and those in the transport sector may be inconvenienced by their circulation.

While Binay welcomed the "fresh designs" sported by the new generation coins, she also questioned if the BSP's Numismatic Committee considered the possible confusion it would cause between merchants and the public.

The Numismatic Committee is tasked with initiating new design studies and proposing upgraded security features for the country's currency.

"Sa totoo lang, meron impact sa ordinaryong Pinoy sa araw-araw na transaksyon ang mga bagong coin na ilalabas ng BSP," she said.

[Translation: To be honest, the new BSP coins have an impact on Filipinos' daily transactions.]

She said the BSP should have done a more thorough information drive or media campaign before releasing the new generation of coins.