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New Banknote Series for Uganda

New Banknote Series for Uganda
On 17 May 2010, the Bank of Uganda began circulating a new family of bank notes with the first major design chance in over 20 years.
Thia is particularly significant in that, for the first time in the country`s history a new family of bank notes has been issued for reasons other than political ones. In this launch speech in Kampala on 3 May the Governor of the Bank of Uganda, Prof. Emmanuel Tumusiime-Mutebile emphasised this very clearly when he started : It`s the first time that the Bank of Uganda has, without government intervention, produced its own banknotes. Actually, until very recently the government did not even know that we were engaged in producing this series !
A few decades ago this would not have been the case....
Political Turbulance
The Republic of Uganda-population 32 million- is a landlocked country in East Africa, bordered by Kenya, Sudan, Congo, Rwanda and Tanzania. The country began issuing its own currency in 1996 after gaining independence from Britain. All subsequent, reflect the political turbulance of this era.
The 1973 issue carried the portrait of Idi Amin, who seized power in 1971. He was deposed in 1979 by Tanzanian forces aided by Ugandan exiles , and his portrait  on the noteswas replaced with the Bankl of Uganda building. In 1981 a new government came into office, followed by a new series of notes carrying president Obote`s portrait. 1985 saw another change in government an d a subsequent new issue of notes that replaced Obote+s portrait with Uganda`s national emblem
It was finally in 1986 that political stability came to Uganda in the form of President Musevini. The following year the Uganda shilling was revalued , due to Hyper-inflaction, and a new series of notes issued. Over the next 20 years Musevini was to transform Uganda into what has been lauded an economic miracle.Inflation dropped to %5 and %7 growth rate wa recorded in 2008, despite the global downturn. The 1987 banknote series would come to symbolize this newfound stability, lasting as it did for 23 years. it was also the first time that focus shifted to the functional and security aspects of the notes.
This time for the Public
Today Uganda is a democratic nation of relative peace and prosperity. the 2010 family of banknotes reflects these values in a design rooted in indigenous art that celebrates the country`s historical, cultural and nature heritage. The front of each notedepicts, as a main theme ,the mats,pots and ornaments used in Uganda homes. The reserve side shows an outline map of Uganda with various wildlife scenes.
The notes-printed by De La Rue- are in the existing denominations of 1000,5000,10000,20000 and 50000 Shillings as well as a new denomination of 2000 shillings (USD $0.95). The new denomination is intended  to facilite transsactions among ordinary people , as the Uganda Finace Minister puts it.
The notes are smaller in size than the previous series, which will remain legal tender until further notice.
These features include a watermark , a Starchome colour shift window thread, an iridescent pattern, and a raised feature for visually impaired people. The notes are printed intaglio on both sides and varnished for added durability.
A First for SPARK
In addition Uganda is the first country in Africa to use SPARK, a new generation of optical security from SICPA, firts ised on Kazakhstan`s 5000 Tenge commemorative note of 2008. Not only is Uganda the first country in Africa to use SPARK it is also the first country to use it on all denominations.
This is specially important inm a country where cash remains the predominant preferred meansd of payment.

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