Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed introduces new currency notes

THE government of Ethiopia has introduced new currency notes, with enhanced security features and other distinctive elements. The new currency notes replace the Birr 10, 50 and 100 notes while an additional Birr 200 note has also been unveiled.

In making the announcement, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, said the current Birr 5 note remains unchanged and will be turned into coin format soon. Ahmed said the currency change is aimed at gathering currency circulating informally and outside of financial institutions; curb corruption and contraband and support financial institutions confront currency shortage.

Ahmed said: “Most of the print work is currently in the country within the National Bank of¬†Ethiopia vault. Distribution mechanism and planning having been developed and will go in effect through concerned bodies.

“Security plays a key component in the currency change process and relevant authorities together with members of the community will enforce secure implementation.

“A Federal command post that includes National Defense, NISS and Federal Police will be set up to oversee this process with the expectation that Regional Command Posts will also be set up.

“While Ethiopia has never had a symbol to represent its currency, a new symbol has been designed and will be soon unveiled to symbolize the Birr.”