BNM to recycle near new banknotes for CNY

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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 15): Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) will continue to recycle near new RM1 and RM5 banknotes, in support of the 'Go Green' initiative, for the coming Chinese New Year (CNY).

In a statement here today, BNM said the initiative, which was launched in July 2013, was well-received by the public, and this has enabled it to issue 35 per cent less new banknotes for Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

"BNM would like to thank the public for the support and urge all Malaysians to continue using near new banknotes during the CNY celebration," it said.

It issued about 750 million pieces of new RM1 and RM5 banknotes for both Hari Raya Aidilfitri and CNY every year, however, about 70 per cent would be deposited back into banks, without being used for any payment transactions, which was an unnecessary use of the country's resources.

The central bank said, printing 500 million pieces of banknotes consumed more than 80 tons of ink and two million kWh of electricity, which were enough to power 7,500 Malaysian homes for a month.

"The public are encouraged to use such near new banknotes for 'angpow', as only high quality banknotes are recycled," it said.

The national initiative, which aimed to promote sustainability, was a collaborative effort by the Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water, BNM, Association of Banks in Malaysia (ABM), Association of Islamic Banking Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM), Malaysian environmental non-governmental organisations and Yayasan Anak Warisan Alam, it said.

"Throughout this festive season, BNM would ensure sufficient banknotes of all denominations, which ABM and AIBIM will facilitate its distribution to members of the public, through bank branches and automated teller machines," it said.