Lesotho introduces new smaller-sized series of notes
- Published: Feb 19, 2022, 8 AM
The Central Bank of Lesotho on Jan. 4 put a redesigned series of maloti bank notes into circulation in the small country, an enclave in South Africa.
The new 10-, 20-, 50-, 100-, and 200-maloti notes are similar in appearance to their predecessors, but with innovations that, bank governor Retšelisitsoe Matlanyane says, “are safer, secure, convenient in terms of size, and we hope they will last for some time until we move on to the next stage, which could be digital currency or other innovations in the industry.”
All have faces with Kings Moshoeshoe II, Letsie III, and Moshoeshoe I. Each back has a different rustic scene.
Among the enhancements are that the notes are slightly smaller in accordance with recent trends; a SICPA Protect varnish is added, with antibacterial and antiviral properties that make them safer for handling; the security thread that cuts across the portrait of the kings on all denominations is relocated to the left side to improve the design; and in response to an outcry of public complaints, tactile marks for the visually impaired or partially sighted are included to enable them to identify and differentiate the nominal value. Despite the smaller size, the bank has widened features on the notes to help the public easily differentiate genuine notes from counterfeits. All this, Matlanyane said, “was driven by the need to comply with international best practices and to take advantage of innovations in the banknote industry since the introduction of the 2010 series.”
The new tactile marks are in the form of raised printing of parallel lines that can be felt by touching the surface near the edges. The bank removed a silver stripe from a plastic window on the surface of the existing 200-maloti notes because it made the notes susceptible to rapid wear and tear.
Ten maloti are the equivalent of about 66 U.S. cents.
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