Fri | Sep 22, 2023

Banking association ready for circulation of new banknotes this month

Published:Thursday | June 1, 2023 | 7:38 PM

The Jamaica Bankers' Association (JBA) said it is actively collaborating with the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) to ensure a smooth transition for the introduction and circulation of the recently redesigned polymer banknotes, for mid-June.

The circulation of the new banknotes will take place on a phased basis to ensure a seamless transition from the old notes to the new ones, said President of the Bankers' Association, Septimus 'Bob' Blake.

In the interim, both the current notes and the new polymer notes will coexist and remain legal tender. Therefore, no individual or business will be disadvantaged if they are unable to access the new notes immediately.

Additionally, with the introduction of new polymer notes, adjustments to Automated Banking Machines (ABMs) and other physical banking infrastructure are already underway.

The JBA president noted that retrofitting ABMs to accommodate the distribution of new notes is a standard procedure, which has been successfully executed in previous instances.

“All banking entities have been actively involved in the process to get the 800+ ABMs islandwide ready for this transition. We are united in our efforts and collectively working towards completing the upgrades,” Blake said.

JBA said customers should look out for advisories from their respective banks regarding the completion of upgrades to their ABM fleets, and when the new notes will be available from their machines. Additionally, each entity will advise customers when they are ready to facilitate dispensation of the new polymer banknotes and accept them for lodgements.

“The decision to update our currency with these advanced, security-enhanced polymer notes is an important move towards modernising our monetary system,” said Blake.

“Polymer notes are more durable, reducing reprinting costs and saving valuable resources. They have advanced security features, such as embedded threads and holographic elements, making counterfeiting more challenging and ensuring currency integrity. The JBA is committed to supporting the BOJ to ensure a smooth transition and successful implementation.”

 The JBA is dedicated to maintaining clear and open communication during this transition and will continue to provide updates to the public as the rollout progresses, the association noted.

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