An MVR5,000 (US$325) commemorative note issued by the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) to celebrate the golden jubilee of independence has been put on sale.
Finance minister Abdulla Jihad inaugurated the sales counter on the ground floor of the central bank building in Malé at a ceremony held yesterday.
Former health minister under President Ibrahim Nasir, Moomina Haleem, was the first to purchase the note after the ceremony. The note is on sale with its special packaging for MVR7,500 (US$487).
The commemorative note is also available at the duty free area of the Ibrahim Nasir International Airport and the MMA is also planning “special sales activities at tourist resorts.”
“In addition to normal sales, commemorative notes with serial numbers with special serial numbers will be auctioned at a special function to be held on Wednesday, 5 August 2015,” the central bank said in a press release.
“MMA has now decided to sell a total of only 3,000 commemorative notes in all sales and auction activities.”
The note was designed by young Maldivian artist Abdulla Nashaath, who also designed the ‘Rah Dhihafaheh’ [Golden 50] note series to be introduced later this year. It was unveiled by MMA Governor at a flag-hoisting ceremony held at the Republic Square after midnight on July 26 to kick off independence day celebrations.
MMA Governor Dr Azeema Adam presented Abdul Sattar Moosa Didi, the Maldives’ representative to Sri Lanka when the independence agreement with the British was signed in July 1965, with the commemorative note with a serial number ‘MF 026765,’ which denotes the day the Maldives secured independence after 77 years as a British protectorate.
President Abdulla Yameen and former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom were also presented with the commemorative notes.
“Commemorative notes and coins are issued by central banks of countries as collectors’ items, to celebrate occasions of national and historic importance,” the MMA explained.
“Commemorative gold and silver coins were issued by the MMA to celebrate 25 years of independence in Maldives. Although the commemorative note is considered as legal tender, it is not issued into circulation and thus not intended to be used in regular trade and financial transactions.”
The commemorative note can, however, be changed into face value from MMA and commercial banks operating in the Maldives.
According to the MMA, the obverse side of the note “symbolises the growth and development of the country over 50 years, from 1965 to 2015.”
“Two images of the northern seashore of the capital city of Malé, taken approximately 50 years apart, are used to portray the transition and progress,” the MMA explained.
The reverse side meanwhile features an illustration of the ceremony in which the Maldives officially gained independence, on 26 July 1965.
“It signifies the peaceful approach taken by the country in obtaining independence. The design around the illustration signifies the uniqueness, craftsmanship, heritage, and Islamic customs retained by Maldivians over the centuries,” the MMA said.