Photo from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas FB page

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Monday led the presentation of the PHP1,000-piso polymer banknote, which features the Philippine eagle, in a ceremonial program in Malacañan Palace.

During the program, Duterte got to see a framed version of 50 pieces of the uncut PHP1,000-piso plastic money up close.

Department of Finance (DOF) Carlos Dominguez III and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno presented to Duterte the uncut PHP1,000-piso polymer banknotes.

According to the BSP, the PHP1,000-piso polymer banknotes strengthen efforts against counterfeiting, safety concerns due to the Covid-19, and promote environmental sustainability.

The plastic money features complex security features such as sampaguita clear window, serial numbers, shadow thread, vertical clear window, metallic features, blue iridescent figure, polymer substrate, tactile dots, embossed print, flying eagle, and enhanced value panel.

Polymer banknotes are less susceptible to viral and bacterial transmission and can be sanitized with less risk of being damaged.

They also have a smaller carbon footprint as their production requires less water, energy, and other resources. It can also be recycled into other useful forms such as compost bins, building components, furniture, and other household products.

The new banknotes last 2.5 to five times longer than paper banknotes given their resistance to water, oil, dirt, and general wear-and-tear. The longer lifespan makes them more cost-effective in the long-run.

The front PHP1,000-piso polymer banknote features the Philippine eagle and sampaguita.

Meanwhile, the reverse side remained untouched except for the sampaguita, the coat of arms of the Philippines, and the BSP logo, which were also found on the front.

The reverse side of both the new PHP1,000-piso polymer banknote and the current PHP1,000-piso paper banknote features the South Sea Pearl, Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, and T’nalak weave design.

The BSP will release the new banknote in phases starting this month.

Late last year, the design of the new plastic banknotes was widely criticized for removing the portraits of three Filipino World War II heroes — Vicente Lim, Josefa Llanes Escoda, and Jose Abad Santos.

The BSP, however, said the new PHP1,000-piso polymer banknote and the current PHP1,000-piso paper banknote will co-exist and can both be used for payments and transactions.

The current PHP1,000-piso paper banknotes are made of 80 percent cotton and 20 percent abaca.

Currently, the PHP1,000 banknote is widely circulated in the country, comprising 30 percent of Philippine money in circulation.

Between 2022 and 2025, approximately 500 million PHP1,000 polymer banknotes, amounting to PHP500 billion will be in circulation.

The BSP has tapped the Reserve Bank of Australia and its wholly-owned subsidiary Note Printing Australia for the production of the polymer banknotes. (PNA)