Thursday, January 15, 2009

Brunei $500 Polymer Note

In conjunction with 60th Birthday of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, the Brunei Currency Board issued two new polymer notes in denomination of $500 and $10,000 on 28 December 2006.

Unlike all other Brunei polymer notes, this $500 polymer note has a special feature. Instead of bearing the portrait of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, it does away from its traditional with replacing it with the portrait of Sultan Sir Muda Omar Ali Saifuddien III, the 28th ruler of Brunei Darussalam.

The $500 Polymer Note with the portrait of Sultan Sir Muda Omar Ali Saifuddien III

The front of this $500 polymer note features the portrait of Sultan Sir Muda Omar Ali Saifuddien III and the crest of Brunei Darussalam is printed in red ink on a gold flower patch. The back features the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque in Bandar Seri Begawan which was built in 1958, one of the largest and the most beautiful mosque in South-East Asia.

1st Series of Brunei banknote issued in 1967 with the portrait of Sultan Sir Muda Omar Ali Saifuddien III, father of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Brunei $50 and $100 Polymer Note

The forth series of Brunei banknote consists of polymer and paper notes. Despite the polymer was first introduced in 1996 for the lower denominations (i.e. $1, $5 and $10), the paper notes for the face value of $50 and above are still circulating. It was only until 2004, the Brunei Currency Board introduced the new $50 and $100 polymer notes to replace the older version of paper notes and make a complete set of common circulating polymer notes.
Inherited from its previous polymer theme design, these $50 and $100 adopted the same theme design. The fronts of these note feature the portrait of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah and the Brunei Coat of Arms of Brunei printed in red on the far right. The backs of these notes feature the rain forest that make up the landscape of the Brunei Darussalam.



Singapore - Portrait Series (Polymer Banknote)

Singapore first introduced its $50 polymer banknote in 1990 in conjunction with its nation's 25th year anniversary. It has waited for more than a decade for Singapore to reintroduce its subsequent polymer banknote in circulation. Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), thus far, has issued three circulating polymer banknotes in the denomination of $2, $5 and $10 from 2004 to 2007.

The designs of these polymer notes are similar to their earlier portrait circulating paper notes, except a few changes such as unique security feature have been incorporated by using polymer technology. In addition, the color and size of these polymer banknote are same as its earlier paper notes.


This $2 polymer note was issued on 12 January 2006. The front features the portrait of first President of Singapore, En. Yusof Bin Ishak. The back illustrates the education theme where a group of pupils interacting with a teacher in a "Borderless Classroom". Three prominent institutions of learning are seen in the background. From the extreme right is the institutions are Victoria Bridge School, the old Raffles Institution at Bras Basah Road, and the College of Medicine.


This $5 polymer note was issued on 18 May 2007. The front features the portrait of first President of Singapore's, En. Yusof Bin Ishak. The back illustrates the garden city theme with the portrayal of the old tembusu tree (Fagraea fragrans) which still stands in the grounds of the Singapore Botanic Gardens. The majestic tree of more than 200 years is characterised by its firm and towering presence. The tree bears small red berries and has white flowers that are exceptionally fragrant. The sturdy tree with its highly branched canopy, epitomises the spirit of Singapore - strong, resilient and continuously striving for progress.


This $10 polymer note was issued on 4 May 2004. The front features the portrait of first President of Singapore, En. Yusof Bin Ishak. The back illustrates a sport theme with Singaporean five popular sports. It depicts a jogger, a tennis player and a soccer player on one side, representing the most favoured land sports in Singapore. On the other side, swimming and sailing are pictured representing water sports. These are illustrated against a vibrant general design to convey the sense of energy and ruggedness symbolising sporting activities in general.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Singapore $10,000 - The Highest Value Banknote

Singapore is one of the two Southeast Asia countries (besides Brunei) that issued the highest value banknote in the world. The highest value means its absolute value which is approximately US$6800 but not its denomination value. In term of the highest denomination value, recently the the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has issued a new 10 billion dollar note (worth only US$20) on 19 December 2008, one of the hyperinflation countries in the world.

The first $10,000 banknote of Orchid series issued by Monetary Authority of Singapore

Singapore first introduced its $10,000 banknote as the highest denomination of its Orchid series which was issued on 29 January 1973. The note has a dimension of 203 x 133 mm. It is one of the highest value currency in Asia. On its subsequent banknotes, the second (Bird) and third (Ship) series, this $10,000 banknote was continued to be introduced in 1980 and 1989.

The fourth series of $10,000 banknote was introduced on 9 September 1999. It was designed in gold color with the front features the portrait of Yusof Bin Ishak. The back features the future direction of Singapore economy, one of which is knowledge-based and technology-driven.

The forth series of Singapore banknote with the face value of $10,000 printed in gold color

We are now in the new era of technology, I sometimes wonder the effectiveness of the such high value note circulating in the market. Does anyone really use it to pay bills in exclusive shopping mall? The answer might not be favorable since we are all surrounded with the easiness of cheques, credit cards and online banking. Perhaps, it intended to give businessman an alternation to hold the real money instead of playing with only figures.