Saturday, September 27, 2008

Singapore $50 Commemorative Note for 25th Anniversary of Independence

This $50 commemorative note was issued by Monetary Authority of Singapore in 1990 to commemorate the nation's 25th Anniversary of Independence. Singapore was the second country to issue a Guardian polymer banknote after Australia. This note was printed by Note Printing Australia in size of 157mm x 74mm. The following are the full description of this commemorative note.

The front features the development of Singapore

The back features the multi-racial character of Singapore

A $50 commemorative banknote is being issued for the first time in Singapore to celebrate the nation’s 25th year of independence. It was designed by artist Chua Mia Tee, and is also the first banknote to be designed in Singapore. Some 5.1 million notes will be produced, of which 300,000 will carry the anniversary date, 9 August 1990; the other 4.8 million are for circulation.

The front of the note illustrates the country development. The picture on the left is based on a painting of the harbour and water-front executed by W.Gray in 1861. Singapore’s natural deep water harbour and strategic location at the crossroad of Europe and the Far East had much to do with the island’s early success as an entrepot. The port’s activities expanded rapidly with the opening of the Suez Canal and the advent of the steamship; and the resulting prosperity, together with the lure of the rich Malayan hinterland, drew migrants from all over the world to make their fortunes and their homes in Singapore.

A studied contrast is provided by the picture on the right, which depicts the highly computerized container part of today, flanked by the lofty building of the financial district. Modern Singapore is a major manufacturing and financial centre, and, in terms of tonnage handled, is the busiest port in the world. It is a global city, linked to the rest of the world by its efficient telecommunication system, and its highly acclaimed airline.

The oval in the center shows the first President of Singapore, Encik Yusof bin Ishak, with five stars on the left. Four blossoms of the national flower, Vanda Miss Jaaquim, are above this oval; these flowers are perfectly matched on the front and the back of the note.

The 25th anniversary logo is visible on the upper right-hand corner when the note is held up to the light; the signature and seal of Dr. Richard Hu Tsu Tau, Minister for Finance and Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of Currency, Singapore, is in the lower right-hand corner.

The back of the note highlights the multi-racial character of Singapore. On the right is a mixed group of jubilant Singaporeans, with State flag behind them. The Singapore Arms is to the right of the flag. At the sitting of the First Parliament (shown on the left), the President, Encik Yusof bin Ishak, is flanked by six High Court Judges (Justice Kulasekeram, Justice Ambrose, Justice M Buttrose, Chief Justice Wee Ching Jin, Justice Tan Ah Tah, Justice FA Chua and two aides-de-camp; the Speaker is Mr. A P Rajah, and on the government bench can be seen the Prime Minister, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, and fours members of his cabinet.

In addition to traditional security devices (intaglio printing, microprinting, perfect registration of features, latent image i.e. the BCCS logo is seen on the fornt when the note is viewed horizontally at eye level), this virtually unforgeable note also incorporates the latest in banknote security features: a shadow image (the anniversary logo) and an optically variable device (OVD) – the image in the centre of the note. The ODV can be viewed from the front and the back, and diffracts light to produce a varying rainbow pattern when viewed from different angles. TO incorporate the OVD, a special polymer (plastic) substrate which can take printing like an ordinary banknote was created. The technology to produce this note was pioneered and developed by the Note Printing Branch of the Reserve Bank of Australia, and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation.

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