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Botswana pula
Obverse of 2 pula (1980s) Reverse of 2 pula (1980s)
Obverse of 2 pula (1980s) Reverse of 2 pula (1980s)
ISO 4217 Code BWP
Official user(s)  Botswana
Unofficial user(s)  Zimbabwe[1]
Inflation 8.4%,12.5% (CIA World Factbook, 2008 est.)
Source Bank of Botswana, 19 February 2008
Method CPI
Subunit
1/100 thebe
Symbol P
Coins 5, 10, 25 thebe ( rarely ) 50 thebe, 1, 2, 5 pula
Banknotes 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 pula[2]
Central bank Bank of Botswana
Website www.bankofbotswana.bw

The pula is the currency of Botswana. It has the ISO 4217 code BWP and is subdivided into 100 thebe. Pula literally means "rain" in Setswana, because rain is very scarce in Botswana - home to much of the Kalahari Desert - and therefore valuable. Pula also means "blessing" as rain is considered a blessing. Thebe means "shield".

Contents

History

The pula was introduced in 1976, replacing the South African rand at par. Despite a 12% devaluation in May 2005, the pula remains one of the strongest currencies in Africa.

Coins

All coins of the pula

In 1976, coins were introduced in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 thebe and 1 pula. The 1 thebe was struck in aluminium, with the 5 thebe in bronze and the others in cupro-nickel. These coins were round except for the scalloped 1 pula. Bronze, dodecagonal 2 thebe coins were introduced in 1981, but discontinued after 1985. In 1991, bronze-plated steel replaced bronze in the 5 thebe, nickel-plated steel replaced cupro-nickel in the 10, 25 and 50 thebe and the 1 pula changed to a smaller, nickel-brass, equilateral-curve seven-sided coin. A similarly shaped, nickel-brass 2 pula was introduced in 1994. In 1998, following the withdrawal of the 1 and 2 thebe, smaller 5, 10, 25 and 50 thebe coins were introduced, with the 5 and 25 thebe coins being seven-sided and the 10 and 50 thebe coins remaining round. A bimetallic 5 pula was introduced in 2000 composed of a copper-nickel center in a brass ring.

Banknotes

In 1976, the Bank of Botswana introduced notes in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10 and 20 pula. The 1 and 2 pula notes were replaced by coins in 1991 and 1994, whilst 50 and 100 pula notes were introduced in 1992 and 1993, respectively. The 5 pula note was replaced by a coin in 2000. According to a press release[3], the old 1, 2 and 5 pula banknotes were demonetized on July 1, 2006, but can be exchanged at the central bank for 5 years.

New note series in August 2009.[4]

Current BWP exchange rates
From Google Finance: AUD CAD CHF EUR GBP HKD JPY USD ZAR
From Yahoo! Finance: AUD CAD CHF EUR GBP HKD JPY USD ZAR
From XE.com: AUD CAD CHF EUR GBP HKD JPY USD ZAR
From OANDA.com: AUD CAD CHF EUR GBP HKD JPY USD ZAR

See also

References

  1. ^ Alongside Zimbabwean dollar (suspended indefinitely from 12 April 2009), Euro, US dollar, Pound Sterling and South African rand. The US Dollar has been adopted as the official currency for all government transactions.
  2. ^ http://www.banknotenews.com/files/tag-botswana.html Accessed 2009-09-02
  3. ^ Nachthund on behalf of Bank of Botswana (2006-02-06). "Demonetization of P1, P2 and P5 Banknotes". http://www.nachthund.biz/CatalogUpdate/Botswana/BOT0706-01.html. Retrieved 2006-07-31.  
  4. ^ www.banknotenews.com

External links

Preceded by:
South African rand
Reason: creation of independent currency
Ratio: at par
Currency of Botswana
1976
Succeeded by:
Current







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