The Pathet Lao Government of Laos has introduced a new currency for the newly-emergent Communist nation -- and has rationed the amount of old currency which people can exchange for the new.
GV Vientiane street
SCUs People reading Government currency exchange regulations posted on doorways (2 shots)
GV Soldier outside shop
GV Queues outside bank
CUs Bundles of old currency in basket (2 shots)
GV Crowd outside bank and man checking money
SCU People in crowd checking new currency
GVs Crowd examining new currency (3 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Pathet Lao Government of Laos has introduced a new currency for the newly-emergent Communist nation -- and has rationed the amount of old currency which people can exchange for the new.
SYNOPSIS: In the streets of Vientiane, the capital, people have been queueing outside approved exchange bureaux, paying close attention to Government notices on public display giving details of regulations about exchanging the old currency. The new unit -- named the "Liberation Kip -- is worth one-twentieth of the former official currency, the "Royal Kop". There were approximately 600 old Royal Kips to the pound sterling. The Government said the introduction of the Liberation Kip was necessary to help contain inflation caused by, it said, an "American and reactionary financial squeeze".
But the amount of old money exchangeable is strictly limited. Heads of families are able to change a maximum of 200,0000 Royal Kips, and soldiers and public servants are limited to a 100,000. Any greater amounts have to be deposited in bank accounts, and withdrawals from such bank accounts can only be made with official permission after an explanation of what the money is needed for. If withdrawal requests are granted, special government forms will be issued enabling people to draw from their accounts.