May 24, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Saudi Arabia will officially start replacing SAR currency notes with coins from Thursday May 24, according to Sabq.
The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) had announced the move after Riyadh authorities issued the sixth generation of banknotes and coins in December 2016 to mark the era of the current monarch King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
A SAMA statement issued on Wednesday announced that SAR currency notes would be gradually phased out until they are no longer in circulation in the market.
It said that the metallic coins represent a core part of the Saudi national currency, adding that those who refuse to use them would face legal measures.
The monetary authority said that the replacement would have a positive effect and expose traders who refused to accept riyal coins.
“The metallic currency will have a longer life expectancy, greater resilience to counterfeiting, ease of recycling and lower health risks,” it said in the statement.
The average life expectancy of a coin is estimated at 20-25 years, compared to the life expectancy of the paper currency, which is estimated between 12 months and 18 months depending on the conditions of circulation.
The SAMA statement said that the paper Saudi riyals in different denominations make up 49 per cent of the trade currency in the country.
It announced that all denominations of the SAR coins will be available at SAMA branches and banks across the Kingdom.
It urged people to lodge complaints on its website samacares.sa or call hotline 8001256666 in case banks don’t provide customers with the new metallic riyals.