Creating of new 2p and £2 coins to be halted as cash usage slows

As the usage of coins continues to decrease in the UK, Royal Mint reportedly has no plans to make any 2p or £2 coins over the next ten years, according to The Mirror. 

The National Audit Office (NAO) recently reported that COVID-19 has significantly enhanced the growth towards a cashless society, as an increasing number of people are opting to utilise digital payments. 

A spokeswoman for The Royal Mint emphasised: “We constantly monitor the demand for coins from the banks and Post Offices, and seek permission to manufacture more from HM Treasury.”

Nonetheless, the NAO has detailed the potential implications of the accelerated move away from cash, specifically on financial inclusion. 

Meg Hiller, who chairs the influential Public Accounts Committee in the House of Commons, stated: “Cash use might be declining overall but it remains a vital part of millions of people’s lives – particularly for some of the most vulnerable in society.

“The government took its eye off the ball and too many people already have to go out of their way to get their hands on cash.

“It and the regulators will have to hurry to catch up with fast-moving technology, or even more people could be left behind.”

Gareth Davies, head of the NAO also underlined that the approach could change as the climate for cash usage evolves. 

He concluded: “The approach is fragmented, and it is not clear that the action being taken will keep up with the pace of change.

“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.”