The Royal Mint Won't Be Making 2p Or £2 Coins For The Next 10 Years
In case you were thinking of bulking up your piggy bank supply, think again, as the National Audit Office has said that no new £2 or 2p coins will be made for the next decade.
It's clear that people aren't using cash anywhere near as much as they used to, an issue that has been accelerated further by the coronavirus pandemic.
Plus, according to the Royal Mint, there are enough of these two coins to last us the next ten years.
The NAO reports that a decade ago, cash was used in six out of 10 transactions. However, by 2019 it was used in less than three in 10 transactions.
The organisation wrote in a statement: "The outbreak of Covid-19 may have accelerated this trend, as data suggests that market demand for notes and coins declined by 71% between early March and mid-April during the lockdown."
You may have noticed that most companies have switched from either accepting cash or card payments to contactless as a way to ease the spread of the disease.
Nonetheless, the pressures on the cash system could mess up things for people who find it difficult to rely just on card payments, especially older people and those on a low income.
As such, in March of this year, the UK government said it would be bringing forward legislation to protect entrance to cash with these people in mind.
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Gareth Davies, head of the NAO, explained: "As society progresses towards the wide use of digital payments, the use of cash in transactions is dwindling.
"It may become harder for people to access cash when they need it and those without the means to pay digitally will struggle if cash is not accepted.
"HM Treasury now works more closely with the public bodies in the cash system to achieve the government's goal of safeguarding access to cash.
"However, the approach is fragmented, and it is not clear that the action being taken will keep up with the pace of change."
Regardless of the actions in place, the Royal Mint has no plans to generate new 2p or £2 coins, as well as cutting those working on coin-making within its currency division.
In a bid to advise the HM Treasury, the NAO recommends that the government's economic and finance ministry should set out more plainly the outcomes it wants the money system to deliver for both customers and businesses.
The organisation added: "To drive efficiency, the Mint and the Bank should maximise opportunities to learn from each other's experiences of cash production and align production capacity closely to future needs."