May 8, 2007 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s central bank says there is no ‘shortage’ of coins in the country, and a campaign to bring back coins into circulation has been mis-understood by the public. Authorities started a campaign to persuade children to break their piggy banks and exchange coins for notes and a 20 percent bonus in school books and pens.
“It is possible that this coin collecting campaign may have been misunderstood as being carried out due to a shortage of coins and therefore the Central Bank wishes to assure the public that there is no shortage whatsoever of any coins and that ample stocks can be obtained from commercial banks or the Central Bank,” the monetary authority said in a statement.
Central Bank says it wants old coins to be put back into circulation to “save valuable foreign exchange that is spent annually on minting new coins”.
“Towards that end, action is now being taken to collect idle coins lying in households, religious places and charitable organizations,” the bank said.
The bank says the incentives in the form of exercise books would also help inculcate the savings habit amongst school children.
Sri Lanka’s savers found themselves cheated