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Total commemorative banknotes issued is under 1,500 pieces. If you have achieved any figures close to this, then you are doing extremely well, as many of the older commemorative notes are hard to find even in poor conditions.

Opinion: Many collectors of commemorative banknotes would have come across with those Somaliland sets overprinted with gold and silver texts with the following wordings - 5th Anniversary of Independence 18 May 1996 [Sanad Gurade 5ee Gobanimadda 18 May 1996]. I believe these are "home made" (or fake) and not authorised by the central bank. My argument is simple. No central bank would have issued an overprint commemorative banknote that the texts are so large that it would cover the two signatures on the note as well as part of the serial numbers. Even if these are genuine notes, then these could be issued as souvenir sheets and not as legal tender. As I said before, this is my opinion. If you have paid top dollars for these, please think about my argument. There is always a sucker around the corner, including me of course!

All comments are most welcome but it has to be subjects related to banknotes or banknotes collection. If not, it will not be approved. Thanks

10 May 2024

...Mynamar - 20000 Kyats ND2023 Commemorative

ပြည်ထောင်စု သမ္မတ မြန်မာနိုင်ငံတော်‌
(Republic of the Union of Myanmar)
Central Bank of Myanmar est.1948
Currency : Kyat (MMK)
This is the largest denomination of banknote issued in this country. This note was reportedly issued on 31.07.2023, to celebrate the first birthday of the Royal White Elephant called Ratha Mandaka, and also the completion of an 81 feet statue of a sitting Maravijaya Buddha in the capital city of Naypyidaw. The giant Buddha statue was unveiled on 01.08.2023 by General Min Aung Hlaing and is reportedly the world's highest sitting marble Buddha statue. This marble Buddha weighs 1,700 ton and cost US$27.6 million (58 billion kyat) to build. The white elephant, Ratha Nandaka was born on 23.07.2022.
It is common that giant Buddha statues are built in Myanmar as the majority of the people in Myanmar are Buddhist. Whilst this is a commemorative note, only a white elephant is depicted on the front of the note and not the Buddha statue.

No official reason was given as to why this high denomination 20,000 kyats banknote is issued. Since the military ousted the democratically elected government on 01.02.2021, economic boycotts and sanctions imposed by many western nations have hurt the country's economy severely. Obviously, with such a high denomination note issued, there is always a risk of high inflation too. According to a local report, this is a limited edition, and the banknotes are only issued via exchanging of damaged lower denomination of notes with the same value at the central bank branches in Naypyidaw, Yangon and Mandalay. Each person is limited to 3 notes against the same value of unfit banknotes. It is not sure if this is still the condition imposed now for those who want to get them as more and more are popping up for sale. Unless you are a collector, it would be unlikely anyone in Myanmar would exchange for this note, unless you are living in the above-mentioned three cities or getting one out of curiosity. Despite this being a limited edition, in my opinion, it is way overpriced for a banknote that is worth less than US$10 face value. It is not known how many pieces were printed. Without knowing the quantity printed, it is hard to gauge if the current asking price is fair or reasonable.
Twenty Thousand Kyats
White elephant - Ratha Mandaka

Front - Ratha Mandaka, a Yadana white elephant (precious white elephant). In Myanmar (and in Thailand too) cultures, albino white elephant is related to a sacred animal and is considered a good omen. It is believed to be auspicious and divine and it also symbolises wealth and prosperity too. It is also believed that an albino white elephant will bring success in business and life as well.

Signature - N/A
Watermark - Head of Yadana white elephant and electrotype 20000
Dimensions - 152mm x 71mm
Back - Images of the Ava (Sagaing/Inwa/Ava) bridge and Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) bridge. Both run across the Irrawaddy river. The Ava bridge was built in 1934 and was destroyed by the British during the Second World War. The bridge was then rebuilt in 1954 and was then the only bridge that was built across the Irrawaddy River until 2008. The Ayeyarwady bridge was completed and opened in 2008. It has a total length of 1,711 meters. Both bridges link the two cities of Sagaing and Mandalay.
Ava and Ayeyarwady bridges

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