Clean Note Policy – A Quality Standard And Guidelines For Cash Handlers

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7 things you need to know about CBN’s Clean Note Policy

  • Nigeria’s Central Bank unveils Clean Note Policy and Banknote Fitness Guidelines.
  • The Clean Note Policy entails quality banknotes and withdrawal of unfit/soiled banknotes to guarantee public confidence and usage of the Naira banknotes as a medium of exchange.
  • CBN in the document seen Business Insider Sub-Saharan Africa says the policy is intended to be used by the public and major cash handlers such as DMBs, Microfinance Banks, third party service providers, and others.

Nigeria’s central bank (CBN) has launched Clean Note Policy and Banknote Fitness Guidelines – a quality standard and guidelines for cash handlers and banknotes production and re-circulation.

The new guideline was launched in Lagos on Tuesday.

The essence of the new banknote policy, according to CBN documents, is to ensure that the banknotes in circulation are clean and of high quality.

Dipo Fatokun, CBN’s Director of Banking & Payments, during the launching, said the banknote is a reflection of a functional Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

What is CBN Note Policy all about?

Launching of a CBN Clean Note Policy in Lagos (Twitter/@BabajideKO) Launching of a CBN Clean Note Policy in Lagos (Twitter/@BabajideKO)

The Clean Note Policy entails a spectrum of diverse currency management activities geared towards the efficient circulation of premium quality banknotes and withdrawal of unfit/soiled banknotes to guarantee public confidence and usage of the Naira banknotes as a medium of exchange.

CBN in the document seen Business Insider Sub-Saharan Africa said the policy is intended to be used by the public and major cash handlers such as DMBs, Microfinance Banks, third party service providers, and others.

Here are 7 things you need to know about the Clean Note Policy and Banknote Fitness Guidelines in Nigeria:

1. Clean and good quality notes in circulation

According to the policy document, banks should ensure notes in circulation are clean and of good quality. The document also mandates bank to classify notes into a fit and unfit category and return unfit ones to the CBN as unfit banknotes shall not be re-circulated.

The CBN said it will monitor compliance on a regular basis.

2. All ATMs to dispense and accept only fitness notes

The Central Bank Of Nigeria (CBN) said it will ensure that the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) deployed by banks and other service providers are configured to dispense and accept only genuine banknotes in all denominations. The ATMs shall dispense notes that have been duly checked for authenticity and fitness according to the Bank’s standard and operators whose ATMs contravene this provision shall be sanctioned in line with the existing guidelines.

3. A campaign against abuse of Naira notes

Illustration of an abused naira note (CBN) Illustration of an abused naira note (CBN)

Any abuse of naira will be liable to a fine of N50,000 or 6 months imprisonment or both under the CBN Act. The apex bank categorized abuse of naira into Writing/Graffiti, Mutilating, Stapling the Naira, Tearing or making a hole of any kind, Spraying, soiling or matching the naira note.

4 Fit and Unfit banknotes

  • Fit banknote
Teller fit banknotes (CBN specimen) Teller fit banknotes (CBN specimen)

A banknote that is suitable for continued circulation and is sufficiently clean to allow its authenticity and value to be readily ascertained.

  • Unfit banknote

A banknote that is unsuitable for further circulation because of its physical condition, which may be soiled, dirty, limp, worn out, defaced or has a hole that is larger than 10 mm. Unfit notes should be returned to DMBs or a branch of the CBN anywhere in Nigeria for exchange.

Specimen of Unfit banknotes (CBN) Specimen of Unfit banknotes (CBN)

5. The CBN said it shall also ensure the adequacy and availability of currency banknotes in the right denominational mix to meet public demand and maintain confidence in the national currency.

6. The bank also called for the use of approved processing infrastructure by deposit money banks and other approved channels.

7. CBN said the policy will, however, remain open for future amendments in tandem with emerging currency management issues.

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