On redenomination of the Belarusian ruble since July 1, 2016
Beginning on July 1, 2016, the legal tender of the Republic of Belarus – the Belarusian ruble – will be redenominated. A corresponding decision was taken by Edict of the President of the Republic of Belarus No.450 dated November 4, 2015.
The redenomination will be carried out by means of substitution of the banknotes in circulation of the 2000 series by the banknotes and coins of the 2009 series in proportion of 10,000 Belarusian rubles of the 2000 series per 1 Belarusian ruble of the 2009 series. That is, having regard to the chosen increase in the scale of the Belarusian ruble value (1:10,000), the current banknote of the lowest denomination – 100 Belarusian rubles – will be replaced by the lowest denomination of the new currency line – 1 copeck.
A total of seven denominations of banknotes – 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 rubles – and eight denominations of coins – 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 copecks, and 1 and 2 rubles – will be put into circulation beginning on July 1, 2016.
The general concept of the new banknotes design meets the motto "Belarus is my country". Each banknote is dedicated to one of the regions of Belarus and the city of Minsk. The coincidence of the regions and the banknotes denominations was determined in alphabetical order. The design of the banknote of 5 ruble denomination is dedicated to Brest region, 10 rubles – to Vitebsk region, 20 rubles – to Gomel region, 50 rubles – to Grodno region, 100 rubles – to Minsk region, 200 rubles – to Mogilev region, and 500 rubles – to the city of Minsk. The design of new banknotes of the 2009 series maintains continuity of the line of banknotes of the 2000 series as to the use of images of the architectural and urban monuments.
The obverse of the coins being put into circulation bears the image of the State Coat of Arms of the Republic of Belarus, the reverse – the numerical symbols of coins’ denominations.
The currently circulating banknotes of the 2000 series will be the sole legal tender for making cash settlements in the Republic of Belarus till July 1, 2016.
From July 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016, the banknotes of the 2000 series and the banknotes and coins of the 2009 series will be in parallel circulation and subject to obligatory acceptance without restriction in all kinds of payments performed by all economic entities.
During the next five years – from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2021 – the currency units of the 2000 series will be exchanged for the currency units of the 2009 series in any sum without restriction and charging commission.
In the meantime, the old currency units may be exchanged for the new ones:
- from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2019 – at the National Bank, banks and non-bank financial institutions of the Republic of Belarus;
- from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2021 – at the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus; and
- beginning from January 1, 2022, the currency units of the 2000 series will be deemed invalid.
The decision on the Belarusian ruble redenomination was taken with a view to improving money circulation, streamlining accounting and settlements, maintaining the optimal structure of money denominations, as well as reducing public expenditures on servicing cash circulation in the Republic of Belarus to a significant degree.
The redenomination process has a technical nature and will not affect the purchasing power of the Belarusian ruble, the national currency exchange rate versus foreign currencies, as well as the actual level of inflation.
Thus, the prices for goods and services will be recalculated beginning on July 1, 2016 in terms of the selected redenomination scale – 1:10,000. In other words, if prior to the redenomination some product cost, for example, 100,000 Belarusian rubles, after the redenomination its price will be 10 Belarusian rubles. At the same time, for the period of parallel circulation of old and new money – from July 1 to December 31, 2016 – all economic entities will be obliged to indicate two prices – the new and the old ones – to make it easier for the customers to adopt such changes.
Wages, pensions, educational scholarships, cash balances on bank accounts, balance sheets of enterprises and institutions, etc. will be recalculated in the course of the redenomination based on the same principle.
It is worth mentioning that preparations for the redenomination in the Republic of Belarus were under way during a fairly long period. For example, new currency units that will be put into circulation beginning on July 1, 2016 have been printed by order of the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus as early as 2008. However, at that time the redenomination was postponed due to the global economic crisis and, as a consequence, deteriorating economic situation in our country, whereas printed currency units were transferred to the National Bank’s Central Vault.
Taking into account the time of printing, new Belarusian rubles feature certain peculiarities. In particular, banknotes of 2009 series that are put into circulation bear the facsimile of Petr P. Prokopovich’s signature, the then Chairman of the Board of the National Bank. Also, the new fifty-ruble note carries an inscription ‘пяцьдзесят’ which is inconsistent with currently applicable Belarusian spelling rules. In line with Law of the Republic of Belarus No. 420-3 "About Belarusian Spelling and Punctuation Rules" dated July 23, 2008 this word should be spelled with letter ‘я’ in the second syllable, i.e. ‘пяцьдзясят’.
The above-mentioned inconsistencies will be removed as the National Bank will place further orders to print new banknotes.