Nigeria President, Muhammadu Buhari has explained reasons he gave the greenlight for the re-designing of naira notes.
Buhari said project was necessitated by the need to control the volume of currency in circulation.
Heade this disclosure at the launch of the new bank notes before the commencement of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The President expressed delight that the new Naira notes are locally produced by the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting (NSPM) PLC.
Buhari revealed that international best practice dictates that central banks and national authorities should produce new currency notes every 5 to 8 years, noting that the Naira has not been redesigned for the past 20.
“This implies that the Naira is long overdue to wear a new look.
“A cycle of banknote redesign is generally aimed at achieving specific objectives, including, but not limited to: improving security of banknotes, mitigating counterfeiting, preserving the collective national heritage, controlling currency in circulation, and reducing the overall cost of currency management.
“As is known, our local laws – specifically the Central Bank of Nigeria Act of 2007 – grants the Central Bank of Nigeria the power to issue and redesign the Naira.
“In line with this power, the Central Bank Governor approached me earlier in this year to seek my permission to embark on a currency redesign project. I considered all the facts and reasons presented before me by the Central Bank.
“There was an urgent need to take control of currency in circulation and to address the hoarding of Naira banknotes outside the banking system, the shortage of clean and fit banknotes in circulation, and the increase in counterfeiting of high-denomination Naira banknotes. It is on this basis that I gave my approval for the redesign of the ₦200, ₦500 and ₦1000 banknotes.
“While this may not be apparent to many Nigerians, only four out of the 54 African countries print their currencies in their countries, and Nigeria is one. Hence, a majority of African countries print their currencies abroad and import them the way we import other goods.
“That is why it is with immense pride that I announce to you that these redesigned currencies are locally produced right here in Nigeria by our Security Printing and Minting PLC,” he said.