Banknote Production

South Africa Unveils Mandela Banknotes

The central bank of South Africa unveiled a new series of banknotes featuring the image of former president Nelson Mandela.

“We are pleased to issue this new series of banknotes which reflects South Africa’s pride as a nation and pays tribute to a much-loved world icon,” said Reserve Bank Governor Gill Marcus.

The banknotes series series will see bills issued in the R10, R20, R50, R100 and R200 denominations.

In addition to Mandela’s image on the front, the notes will also depict South Africa’s big five animals – lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and elephant – on the back set amongst Bushmen paintings and locally used traditional patterns, according to the Globe And Mail.

Earlier this year, Finance Minister Pravin Gordan said the new notes were part of a campaign that will ensure a new generation remembered Mandela and his efforts in abolishing apartheid in the region.

According to an article printed by IBNLive, South African banknotes are upgraded every seven to ten years in an effort to thwart counterfeiting.

The current banknote series features security features such as a watermark formed within the paper, a security thread running through the banknote paper, intaglio printing, and special features that are only visible when the note is held up to direct light.

Marcus said the bills were expected to be in circulation before the end of 2012.

He also said the new series will be accompanied by a public education programme that will inform consumers about the new images and security features though he did not specify what new features would be included on the notes.

The Globe & Mail: “S. Africa Unveils New Mandela Bank Notes”
IBNLive: “Mandela’s Image To Appear on South African Banknotes”
South African Reserve Bank: “Security Features of Banknotes”


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