Author Topic: Egyptian Pound Turns 114  (Read 1362 times)

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Offline Bimat

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Egyptian Pound Turns 114
« on: January 06, 2013, 11:53:52 AM »
Egyptian pound turns 114

Omar El Adl  / January 6, 2013

The pound first came into existence as a result of a Khedival decree in 1834, replacing the piaster.

Yesterday marked the anniversary of the Egyptian pound banknote, 114 years since its debut in 1899. The Egyptian pound first came into existence as a result of a Khedival decree in 1834, replacing the piaster. The first banknote printed by the National Bank of Egypt (now the Central Bank of Egypt), was in 1899.

The first pound banknote featured a camel and an inscription in classical Arabic that translates to: I vow to pay upon request the amount of one Egyptian Pound to its bearer. This bond has been written on the date of 25 June 1898.

Part of the conditionality of the IMF loan Egypt has accepted, is the government not intervening to use foreign reserves to stabilise the value of the pound. After the economy taking a hit after the 25 January uprising, the Egyptian pound has hit an all-time low value compared to the US dollar in eight years, 1 US dollar to 6.39 Egyptian pounds as of this writing.

In 2006, coins were introduced by the central bank to replace all notes under 5 pounds,

which means the banknote is being replaced by a bimetallic coin.

All coins and banknotes feature famous landmarks from Egypts history, specifically its Pharaonic and Islamic eras.  The notes showcase a famous historic Islamic landmark such as the Ibn Tulun mosque or the Mohamed Ali mosque on one side and a pharoanic landmark or icon on the other such as the Sphinx and Tutankhamun. The notes also feature some Arabic inscriptions and are bilingual.

The introduction of the one pound coin means the eventual death, in phasing out, of the one pound banknote, which still exists today in a different form. Though dark days may lie ahead, perhaps it is a time to celebrate the one pound banknote before it dies, before we have to celebrate the pound itself, in all forms, before it dies as well.

Source: Daily News Egypt
It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. -J. K. Rowling.

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Egyptian Pound Turns 114
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2013, 12:32:56 PM »
I got to Egypt in 1979. Even the Egyptians said there was a heat wave. At the time, an Egyptian pound was 4, so it must have been around $2. Low value banknotes were in a horrible state, falling apart and only partially unreadable. I learned a banknote was OK as long as the serial numbers could still be read. Coins looked good: a commemorative series on Sadat's "corrective revolution" had just been issued and must have been thought of as politically valuable. They could be had everywhere.

The military was clearly in charge and omnipresent. A US aircraft carrier and escorts remained in view from Alexandria. Poverty, suffocating corruption, child deaths, casual beating, shameless begging (bakshish)  were all treated as normal. Houses were collapsing from sandy concrete, made locally. Plastic shopping bags, sweets and ballpoint pens were seen as treasures. I was convinced the country was ripe for revolution. I didn't think it would take so long.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline augsburger

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Re: Egyptian Pound Turns 114
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2013, 05:32:02 AM »
I went in 2001 and there didn't seem much difference between 1979 as you say it and what I saw in 2001. We went walking to a Christian place in the desert and saw a boy coming to talk to us and an old man with a stick basically threatening him and making him go back to the city. A lot of it is to stop people going into the desert to be Islamist militants or something. The money was all banknotes, I hadn't started collecting coins then, but there were none in circulation, at least in Luxor where I was.

Offline Bimat

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Egyptian Pound Turns 114
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2013, 03:00:39 PM »
A friend of mine gave me quite a few Egyptian coins (in 2010 or 2011) which her father had got in his short business trip to Egypt. Those coins were about to get dumped somewhere when she told him that she would rather give them to someone who'll be happy to have them. :) The current Egyptian coins are quite interesting IMO, don't mind getting one more set. ;)

Aditya
It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. -J. K. Rowling.