A recent report from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has highlighted that the production and distribution of new naira notes and other currencies incurred a total expenditure of N74.84 billion in the year 2022.
Despite the challenging backdrop of naira scarcity that afflicted the nation during the latter part of 2022, the CBN’s expenses for currency rollout surpassed those of the previous year by 40.42 percent, surpassing the N53.29 billion expended in the preceding year.
According to the CBN’s financial statements, currency issue expenses in 2022 amounted to N29.65 billion, marking a substantial 94.66 percent increase from the N15.23 billion spent in 2021.
The term “currency issue expenses” refers to the costs related to printing, processing, distribution, and disposal of currency notes, recognized at the point of occurrence.
One of the CBN’s subsidiaries, the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Plc, bore the cost of sale for producing currency notes and coins, which totaled N45.19 billion in 2022. This figure indicated an 18.72 percent rise from the N38.07 billion expended in 2021.
The expenses incorporated components like raw materials, employee benefits for production staff, power and fuel expenses, depreciation, and maintenance.
Throughout 2022, the total currency in circulation amounted to N3.01 trillion, reflecting a 9.47 percent decrease from the N3.32 trillion recorded in 2021.
Comparatively, in 2020, the cost of printing banknotes totaled N58.62 billion, signifying a 28.83 percent decline from the N75.52 billion expended in 2019, as per the CBN’s ‘2020 Currency Report.’
In October 2022, Godwin Emefiele, the suspended Governor of the CBN, announced the forthcoming release of re-designed naira notes by December 15, 2022, with specific denominations of existing notes losing their status as legal tender by January 31, 2023. Unfortunately, this initiative triggered a prolonged cash shortage that adversely impacted the economy for months.
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