The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has received an overwhelming response from the public against the SMS service (8877) launched for distribution of fresh currency notes, as 2.3 million requests were received countrywide in the span of mere four days.
The SMS service was launched by State Bank of Pakistan for the issuance of fresh note for Eid-ul-Fitr 2018 on 31st May 2018. In this regard, an arrangement has been made at 1535 branches in 132 cities as compared to 1018 branches nominated in 120 cities on last Eid-ul-Fitr in 2017.
A vast majority of people are likely not to get fresh currency notes, especially from this facility, as 85 percent have been booked already. The increase in the service’s usage was seen due to increasing awareness of the public through social media and the availability of the mobile phone service.
The central bank appreciates the interest shown by the general public in its 8877 SMS service for getting fresh notes for Eid.
Apart from this SMS service, banks may continue to provide fresh notes to their customers from their branches and ATMs as sufficient quantity is being provided to them by State Bank.
SBP Increases Requests Limit by 50% in 2018
The total booking limit of 2.7 million customers has also been increased this year by 50% as compared to 1.8 million last year. The total capacity of this system is constrained by the number of customers that branches can accommodate on each day and the store of fresh notes available with SBP BSC which is also linked with the capacity to print.
At present, more than 85% of bookings have been issued to members of the general public. This service is available 24/7 hours and it is expected that the system will reach the full limit in the next couple of days.
Accordingly, bookings would be closed once the targeted figure of 2.7 million is achieved. Bookings will be gradually closed in cities where branches will reach their full capacity utilization. However, the issuance of fresh notes against the already issued booking codes will continue till the last day of the service until June 14, 2018, subject to the code’s validity.
The status of all the branches where the booking is still available is continuously updated at the SBP and PBA websites. The general public is, therefore, requested to check the branch status before sending messages to avoid charges and inconvenience.