What is the Currency of Algeria?

By Joyce Chepkemoi on June 13 2019 in Economics

Algerian dinar banknotes.

The official currency used in Algeria is known as the Algerian dinar. Introduced in 1964, the Algerian dinar replaced the colonial Algerian franc at par and was issued in banknotes as well as coins by the Central Bank of Algeria. While the Algerian dinar performed well in international markets in the 1960s, the increased inflation experienced in recent years has had a detrimental effect on its value.

The Algerian Budju

Before the colonization of Algeria by France in the mid-19th century, the official currency in circulation was the budju. The budju was made up of 24 subdivisions known as muzuna. The muzuna was further subdivided either into two kharub or 29 asper. In the period when the budju was the official currency in Algeria, coins were circulated and existed in several denominations including the two asper coin (the lowest existing denomination at the time) and the five asper coin, both of which were minted from copper. Muzuna coins were minted as silver coins and were issued in 3, 4, 6, 8, and 12 denominations. The 1 and 2 budju coins were also minted as silver coins. The sultani was the highest denomination and existed in a quarter, half, and one sultani gold coins. The budju was later replaced by the Algerian franc, which was introduced by colonial French in the 19th century.

The Algerian Franc

The Algerian franc was adopted in 1848 as the official currency in Algeria after the country was colonized by France. During its adoption, the Algerian franc was equal in value to the French franc but was later revalued in 1960 to maintain the parity in value with the French franc. During the 1960-revaluation of the Algerian franc, one newly introduced Algerian franc was equivalent to 100 old Algerian francs. The Algerian franc was made up of subdivisions known as centimes, with 100 centimes making up 1 Algerian Franc. The Algerian franc was replaced by the Algerian dinar in 1964.

The Algerian Dinar

The Algerian dinar is the official currency used in Algeria and is abbreviated in international money markets as DZD. The Algerian dinar was adopted on April 1st, 1964, as a replacement of the Algerian franc at par value after the country gained independence from France in 1962. The term dinar is derived from the Roman term “denarius.” During its adoption, one Algerian dinar was made up of 100 subdivisions known as santeem, which is now defunct. The Central Bank of Algeria issued banknotes of the Algerian dinar in 5, 10, and 100 denominations, as well as coins of the Algerian santeem which were minted in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 denominations. 

Foreign Use of the Algerian Dinar

Apart from Algeria, the Algerian dinar is also used as currency in the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic.

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