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$1, $2 and $5 banknotes are still legal tender in Cambodia: PM Hun Sen

Prime Minister Hun Sen departs for Europe. KT/Khem Sovannara. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

PHNOM PENH, May 30, 2020, The Khmer Times. Prime Minister Hun Sen on Friday has clarified to the public that the $1, $2 and $5 US bank notes are still accepted normally in the Kingdom, The Khmer Times reported.

“I would like to confirm to the Cambodian people that in addition to the NBC announcement on May 28 that the small US banknotes of $1, $2, and $5 is still widely used and accepted across the country,” Prime Minister said.

“It was not banned as rumored said,” he added. “In the event of a halt to the circulation of the said US bills, an official announcement from the National Bank of Cambodia will be released to the public,” Mr Hun Sen said.

“All Citizens, please continue spending freely the said banknotes in the Kingdom without any loss in exchange rates or additional charges,” Prime Minister said.

The National Bank of Cambodia’s (NBC) announcement Thursday that it plans to phase out the use of the $1, $2 and $5 banknotes by August 31, has confused the local community with many believing the notes are being “banned”.

Khmer Times was told by market traders in Phnom Penh’s Kandal Market on Friday that they did not want to accept $1 bills for fear of them being “rendered useless in the coming months”.

“I heard this morning that the government wants to ban the use of small US currency, so I don’t want to be stuck with the banknotes when this happens,” a local vendor said.

There have also been reports on social media of some regional gas stations refusing the American currency from customers, expressing the same concerns.

According to the director of the NBC, Chea Serey, $1, $2 and $5 banknotes are not being “banned” and will still be accepted as legal tender in the Kingdom. “Please note that this measure does not ban any trafficking of these small US dollar banknotes of $1, $2, and $5 in the market,” the central bank stressed.

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