BIAFRAN ECONOMY

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Nwachineke
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BIAFRAN ECONOMY

Post by Nwachineke » Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:26 pm

An early institution created by the Biafran government was the Bank of Biafra, accomplished under "Decree No. 3 of 1967".[21] The bank carried out all central banking functions including the administration of foreign exchange and the management of the public debt of the Republic.[21] The bank was administered by a governor and four directors; the first governor, who signed on bank notes, was Sylvester Ugoh.[22] A second decree, "Decree No. 4 of 1967", modified the Banking Act of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for the Republic of Biafra.[21]

The bank was first located in Enugu, but due to the ongoing war, the bank was relocated several times.[21] Biafra attempted to finance the war through foreign exchange. After Nigeria announced their currency would no longer be legal tender (to make way for a new currency), this effort increased. After the announcement, tons of Nigerian bank notes were transported in an effort to acquire foreign exchange. The currency of Biafra had been the Nigerian pound, until the Bank of Biafra started printing out its own notes, the Biafran pound.[21] The new currency went public on 28 January 1968, and the Nigerian pound was not accepted as an exchange unit.[21] The first issue of the bank notes included only 5 shillings notes and 1 pound notes. The Bank of Nigeria exchanged only 30 pounds for an individual and 300 pounds for enterprises in the second half of 1968.[21]

In 1969 new notes were introduced: £10, £5, £1, 10/- and 5/-.[21]

It is estimated that a total of £115–140 million Biafran pounds were in circulation by the end of the conflict, with a population of about 14 million, approximately £10 per person.[21] In uncirculated condition these are very inexpensive and readily available for collectors.
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