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South African Reserve Bank

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Announcement of the Introduction of a New Note Series
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The South African Reserve Bank is pleased to announce that we are in the process of producing a new South African Bank Note series

International best practice is that the security features of bank notes are upgraded every seven to ten years, particularly given the constant improvements in technology. Such proactive upgrades endeavour to prevent counterfeiting. The current note series was upgraded in 2005, and while the security features remain effective, we decided that it was time to produce a new note series.

In consultation with President Jacob Zuma and the Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, it was agreed that the new note series will be designed. The currency will have the same denominations, sizes and colours but the front of all notes will carry a specially designed engraving of former President Nelson Mandela. The reverse side of each denomination will have an image of one of the big five.
The redesign is being accompanied by a significant recapitalisation of the South African Note Company (SABN), which is being modernised with state of the art printing equipment. The upgrading also entails significant training and up-skilling of the SABN staff.
11 February 1990 stands as one of the most significant days in the history of South Africa as it is on this day; twenty-two years ago that President Nelson Mandela walked out of prison a free man. The iconic image that will be carried on the Rand, the South African currency that is widely used in Sub-Saharan Africa and traded globally, is a tribute to one of Africa and the world’s greatest leaders and statesmen.
We need to stress that the current notes remain legal tender and there will be a programme of replacement with the new notes over time. It is expected that the note will be introduced towards the end of 2012 and further details will be communicated to the public during the course of the year.
For further information contact:
Hlengani Mathebula
Head: Strategy and Communications Department
South African Reserve Bank
082 448 9219


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