Doctored video claims the Philippines has 'new 5,000-peso banknote'

Copyright AFP 2017-2023. All rights reserved.

The Philippines did not release a "new 5,000-peso banknote" in December 2022, as false social media posts with hundreds of thousands of views claim. These posts feature digitally altered videos showing a 5,000-peso bill which the country's central bank BSP said was commemorative and issued in January 2021. The bank said the bill is currently not in circulation, and the highest denomination available is a 1,000-peso bill.

"NEW PHILIPPINE MONEY RELEASED! PHILS. NEW BANK NOTES & COINS WITH PBBM'S SIGNATURE," reads the Tagalog-language caption of a Facebook post that shared the doctored video on December 10, 2022.

The video shows clips of President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos -- referred to in the post by his initials PBBM -- and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) chief Felipe Medalla unveiling banknotes that bear Marcos' signature on December 7, 2022.

Marcos is at the beginning of a six-year term, having been elected president in May.

An image of what appears to be a 5,000-peso ($89) banknote is shown throughout the video.

Screenshot of the false post taken on January 2, 2023

Similar videos have been viewed over 900,000 times on YouTube and Facebook here, here and here.

Comments on the posts suggest people believed the central bank actually released a new 5,000-peso bill in December.

"Wow, our country has a new bill; we now have a 5,000-bill. Be careful not to fold it," one wrote.

"It will be difficult to get change for that from a small store," said another.

But the video has been doctored and AFP has not found evidence the BSP released a "new 5,000-peso bill".

Commemorative banknote

In response to AFP's inquiry, a representative for the BSP forwarded an old media release here that states the 5,000-peso bill is commemorative currency issued on January 18, 2021. It is not in circulation.

The BSP media release says the bill was issued in honour of 16th-century tribal ruler Lapu-Lapu.

Lapu-Lapu's army killed Ferdinand Magellan, the lead explorer in the first successful circumnavigation of the globe, and saw off the Spanish invaders, delaying their colonisation by several decades.

Philippine banknotes currently in circulation -- shown here on the BSP website -- do not include the 5,000-peso bill.

Altered video

The videos shared in the posts have been doctored to insert the image of the commemorative 5,000-peso banknote.

Multiple keyword searches found the original clips uploaded here and here on YouTube by state-run Radyo Television Malacanang on December 7, 2022.

The clips were titled "Presentation of New Philippine Banknotes and Complete Set of New Generation Currency Series Coins".

Nowhere in these clips is a 5,000-peso bill displayed or mentioned.

Below is a screenshot comparison of the altered video in one of the false posts (left) and the original Radyo Television Malacanang clip (right):

A corresponding statement issued by the BSP for the event says: "The banknotes with the specimen signatures of the 17th President of the Republic of the Philippines and the 6th Governor of the BSP include the following denominations: 20-, 50-, 100-, 500-, and 1000-Piso."

Below are images of the bills unveiled during the event from the BSP's statement:

 

 

Philippine media outlet Rappler has also debunked similar posts here.

AFP has repeatedly debunked misinformation around Philippine banknotes for example here, here and here.

January 20, 2023 This story was updated to correct a typo in the summary.