Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Questions (185)

Michael McGrath

Question:

185. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if the Central Bank of Ireland has a policy on whether bank ATMs should dispense €10 notes to customers; if he will confirm the practice of retail banks regarding the dispensing of €10 notes; the policy as to whether the use of €20 notes or €50 notes is preferred where an amount of €100, for example, is required; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39374/15]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am informed by the Central Bank that a recommendation contained in the National Payments Plan targeted a significant increase in the number of €10 notes dispensed from ATMs.  Targets were designed in order to increase the proportion of €10 notes in circulation with a view to making lower denomination notes available.

The specific targets contained in the National Payments Plan were for a minimum of 4% of all notes by volume distributed from non-retailer ATMs to be €10 notes from Q3 2013; and 5% of all notes by volume to be €10 notes from Q3 2014. This second target represented an increase of around 150% in the number of €10 notes dispensed from ATMs previously. These targets were met by the banks on the dates set, as part of their commitment to the broader goal of improving the efficiency of payments in the National Payments Plan.

Building on the recommendations in the National Payments Plan, the Central Bank has now set targets for the banks to achieve in terms of issuance of €10, €20 and €50 notes from ATMs by 2018. These targets were calculated following a study of the requirements of consumers given patterns of cash usage.

The targets are that 6-10% of all notes by volume are to be €10 notes by the end of 2018, 40-45% of all notes by volume are to be €20 notes and 45-50% of all notes by volume are to be €50 notes.  The latest available data, for Q3 2015, on amounts actually dispensed shows that 6% of all notes are €10 notes, 36% of all notes are €20 notes and 58% of all notes are €50 notes.

The Central Bank is working, in co-operation with the commercial banks, towards these targets. This topic is a permanent agenda item at the National Cash Forum which is chaired by the Central Bank, and is also discussed at bilateral meetings with banks by the Central Bank.