Ethiopia has announced plans to introduce new bank notes to replace those bearing a picture of the late Emperor, Haile Selassie, overthrown in a military coup two years ago.
GV Commercial Bank of Ethiopia in Addis Ababa with crowds queueing outside. (2 shots)
SV Banner suspended form building alongside lion sculpture.
GV Another branch of Commercial Bank of Ethiopia.
GV INT. People queueing at counters.
SVS People drawing money.
SV People queueing at counters.
An eight per cent levy will be imposed on notes of 50 and 100 dollars (GBP 14 and GBP 28 sterling) and owners of 500-dollars (GBP 140 sterling) noes will be charges a fifth of their value in exchange. No warning was given of the announcement and bans were still issuing 50 and 100 dollar notes on Monday (20 September).
Initials VS 18.15
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Background: Ethiopia has announced plans to introduce new bank notes to replace those bearing a picture of the late Emperor, Haile Selassie, overthrown in a military coup two years ago.
SYNOPSIS: The change was made public by government proclamation on Tuesday (21 September) and almost immediately people in the capital, Addis Ababa, started queueing outside banks. The new currency - which has exactly the same value as the old - is to be called the birr. Designs for the new notes are to include peasants, workers and examples of Ethiopian wildlife.
The government announcement also said that a levy would be charged on the exchange of large denomination old notes. Based on official statistics on notes in circulation, Ethiopians could stand to lose up to 30 million Ethiopian dollars -- birr -- (over GBP 8 million sterling) in the exchange, in what one diplomat quoted by Reuters news agency described as "an effective wealth tax". The government said the new notes will begin to appear next month.