The currency in circulation (CIC) has reached a new year high of N2.99 trillion as of October 31, 2023, according to the latest data from the Central Bank of Nigeria.
This represents an increase of 8.33% or N230 billion from N2.76 trillion documented in the previous month. It is also an increase of 115.11% or N1.6 trillion from N1.39 trillion recorded in January 2023.
The apex bank defines CIC to be currency outside the banking system and the vault cash of banks.
With the new increase of almost N3 trillion, currency in circulation appears to be on the rise to the level it was in October 2023 (N3.29 trillion) before the naira redesign policy of the CBN.
During a meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in October 2022, the former CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele said that the increase in inflationary pressure was being fuelled by the prevalence of N1,000 and N500 bills in circulation.
Emefiele, who has since been removed from his position, stated in October 2022 that the banknotes of N200, N500, and N1,000 would be redesigned.
The former governor said, “Accordingly, all Deposit Money Banks currently holding the existing denominations of the currency may begin returning these notes back to the CBN effective immediately. The newly designed currency will be released to the banks on order of first-come-first-serve basis.
“Customers of banks are enjoined to begin paying into their bank accounts the existing currency to enable them to withdraw the new banknotes once circulation begins.”