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Mr Rundheersing Bheenick, Governor, Bank of Mauritius, talks to Currency News in its special issue released on the occasion of Banknote 2014 Conference, April 2014

Putting the ‘Swing’ into the New Mauritius Notes

Why did you choose the security feature Swing® by Oberthur Fiduciaire on the new Mauritius Rs25 and Rs50 notes?

Our plans to move to polymer banknotes have been quite long in gestation.  When we decided to make the move, we floated an international tender, inviting proposals to replicate the current paper notes as closely as possible on a polymer substrate, so that they could circulate in parallel.  The watermark feature in the paper note was replaced by a transparent window in the polymer equivalent. As we were innovating, we wanted to go all out with modern features to the extent possible. The Swing® feature fitted this requirement very nicely because the alternatives proposed were widely used in many other polymer notes elsewhere. 

How does the public like these two new notes in Mauritius?

We introduced three polymer notes in parallel, the Rs25 and Rs50 denominations supplied by Oberthur, and the Rs500 note supplied by De La Rue. We took quite some pains to communicate to the public about the need for change and to explain the differences that exist between a polymer note and a paper note.  We had a high-level launch of these notes by the Prime Minister of the country, Dr the Honourable Navinchandra Ramgoolam.  The public was actually demanding the notes to be put in circulation faster than the Bank was able to get them out!  The reception has been enthusiastic.  The Swing® feature is easily recognisable and it makes life easier for users and merchants.  

Is the Bank of Mauritius pleased that Swing® by Oberthur Fiduciaire has been selected as a finalist in the category of Best New Currency Feature or Product?

Of course, we are delighted!! The more so because two polymer banknotes have been selected for this prestigious award.  A feat indeed for a small island state tucked far away in the Indian Ocean.