According to Australia’s Reserve Bank, the country is removing the British monarchy from its bank notes, and the $5 note will have a fresh design in place of the late queen’s image.
The British monarchy will no longer appear on Australian banknotes.
The new $5 bill will have an Indigenous design instead of a picture of King Charles III, the country’s central bank announced on Thursday. However, it is still expected that the king would replace the late Queen Elizabeth II’s picture on coins.
Australia’s only existing banknote with a portrait of the monarch is the $5 bill.
The Labor Party government, which favored the adjustment, was consulted before the bank made its judgment, according to the bank. The move, according to critics, has political motivations.
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Although it has become increasingly symbolic over time, the British monarch continues to serve as Australia’s head of state. Australia, like many other former British colonies, is discussing how much of its cultural ties to Britain it should keep.
The new $5 note, according to Australia’s Reserve Bank, will have a fresh design in place of the late queen’s image. The bank claimed that by doing this, “the culture and history of the First Australians” would be honored.
“The other side of the $5 banknote will continue to feature the Australian parliament,” the bank said in a statement.
Jim Chalmers, the treasurer, stated that the modification provided a chance to achieve a good balance.
“The monarch will still be on the coins, but the $5 note will say more about our history and our heritage and our country, and I see that as a good thing,” he told reporters in Melbourne.
Peter Dutton, the leader of the opposition, compared the move to changing the national holiday of Australia Day.
“I know the silent majority don’t agree with a lot of the woke nonsense that goes on but we’ve got to hear more from those people online,” he told 2GB Radio.
The choice for the king not to appear on the note, according to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, was crucial, according to Dutton, who urged him to “own up to it.”
By establishing a new position of assistant minister for the republic soon after entering office last year, Albanese began setting the foundation for an Australian republic, but his administration has not made conducting a referendum to sever constitutional links with Britain a top priority.
Before the $5 note is released to the public, the bank intends to interact with Indigenous organizations during the design process, a process that it anticipates will take several years.
The present $5 note will be printed up until the new one is unveiled, and it will continue to be accepted as legal tender after that.
Later this year, it’s anticipated that Australian coins will include the image of King Charles III.
In U.S. currency, one Australian dollar is equivalent to roughly 71 cents.
With the introduction of the 50 pence coin in December, the transition of British currency to the new monarch started. The front of the coin features Charles, and the reverse commemorates his mother.
The Reserve Bank of Australia estimates that 208 million $5 notes worth AU$1.04 billion ($734 million) were in use this week.
10% of the more than 2 billion Australian banknotes in circulation are of the lowest denomination.
Australia would become a republic with an Australian citizen in place of the British monarch, according to Albanese’s center-left Labor Party.
Albanese appointed Matt Thistlethwaite to the position of assistant minister for the republic after Labor won the May 2016 elections. There won’t be any changes during the reign of the queen, Thistlethwaite said in June.
To keep the British monarch as Australia’s head of state, a Labor government offered a referendum to the Australian people in 1999.
The administration had already committed to conducting a referendum this year to include Native Americans in the constitution before the queen passed away. The inclusion of a republic question in that referendum has been rejected by the government as an unwelcome diversion from its priority for Indigenous people.
More than any other queen, Queen Elizabeth II once appeared on at least 33 different currencies, according to Guinness World Records.