Old Liberian Dollar to Phase Out by 2024

— As the Central Bank of Liberia announces the termination of Legal Tender Status

The Central Bank of Liberia has announced that banknotes printed before 2021 will cease to exist as legal tender as of March 31, 2024. 

While the bank did not specify the value that would be affected, it states that the decision to phase out the old currency as valid legal tender comes after a 12-month period of exchanging old currency for the new family of currency. 

Banknotes expected to be affected are the Liberia Series One and Two, which were printed between 2003-2009 and 2016-2017, with the latter carrying denominations of L$500 higher.

“As of March 31, 2024, in compliance with Section 25 of the Amended and Restated Act of the CBL of 2020, the Central of Bank of Liberia (CBL) will officially terminate from circulation all old Liberian dollar banknotes printed before 2021,” the Bank said in a press statement on October 3.

“This will allow only the new family of Liberian dollar currency in the amount of L$48.734 billion authorized by the 54th National Legislature in its Joint Resolution of May 2021, which is being gradually infused into the economy as the only valid legal tender after the deadline.”

According to the Bank, once the “old currency is phased out,” it will not be used for economic and financial transactions but can still be exchanged through the banking sector. 

The exchange, the Bank said, will not take into consideration the lack of legal tender status of the old families of banknotes but will retain the same value.

“People who will still be in possession of the aforementioned banknotes after the March 31, 2024, deadline will be able to exchange them with the same value at the nearest Central Bank facilities, commercial bank offices, branches and agents, as well as the rural community finance institutions,” the CBL release noted.

It added that the process will heavily involve commercial banks, based on the needs of the rural population and hard-to-reach locations across the country. The new banknotes and coins, the Bank said, will be made adequately available at cash hubs across the country to ensure a smooth rollout of the current termination program.

“As part of its public awareness, CBL will continue its ongoing communications engagements and in-person interactions to deepen public understanding of the currency replacement,” the release added. “The Bank extends its gratitude to the Liberian people for their cooperation and understanding with the exchange exercise, which has been proceeding according to plan.”