King Charles III: No portrait on Australian banknote

King Charles III
No portrait on Australian banknote

King Charles III will not replace his mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II, on the Australian five dollar banknote.

© imago/i Images / imago/Panthermedia

Decision made: The Queen will disappear from Australian banknotes but will not be replaced by a portrait of King Charles III. replaced.

King Charles III (74) will not appear on future Australian five dollar bills. As the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) announced on Thursday, according to CNN, the previously used portrait of the late Queen Elizabeth II (1926-2022) is replaced with a new design that honors “the culture and history of the ‘First Australians'”. The new layout is currently being developed in consultation with this very population group. The process could take several years, it said.

The term “First Australians” refers to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of Australia who are descendants of the world’s oldest human culture. They have inhabited the continent for more than 65,000 years and currently make up about 3.2 percent of Australia’s population of 25 million people.

The decision is virtually tantamount to a total disappearance of the British royal family from all Australian banknotes. Although the portrait of the Queen has appeared “on every Australian banknote series since her coronation” for over seven decades, according to the RBA, this tradition is now apparently being broken: Australian and British media report unanimously that the other banknotes in circulation that depict writers, politicians and artists are not altered.

The current five-dollar bill featuring the Queen will remain in circulation and remain legal tender. This also applies to the period after the introduction of the new banknote design, according to the RBA. It was previously announced that coins bearing the Queen’s portrait would be legal tender “forever”.

Coins and banknotes bearing the image of the Queen are in circulation around the world

Following the death of Queen Elizabeth II last September, billions of banknotes and coins bearing her portrait are being replaced around the world. The Queen’s likeness features on many banknotes and coins in the Commonwealth – a union of 54 countries, almost all of which were formerly colonized by Great Britain. There the British king is also the head of state.


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