Feb 2, 2023, 10:48am EST

Australia won’t feature King Charles III on their $5 note. Here’s what other commonwealth countries are doing


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The News

Australia’s central bank announced Thursday that their $5 banknotes will not feature King Charles III. Instead, the country is planning to honor Indigenous history with a new design that will replace the current portrait of Queen Elizabeth II.

The Queen is featured on currency across the commonwealth, and questions have arisen since her death on whether her image will be replaced.

Here are some plans from other commonwealth countries, and the U.K., on what might happen to their currency.

Australian $5 banknotes with a portrait of the late Queen Elizabeth II are seen in this picture illustration taken February 2, 2023.
REUTERS/Loren Elliott/Illustration
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The View From the United Kingdom

The U.K. unveiled its newly designed banknotes featuring King Charles late last year. The notes aren’t yet in circulation, but are expected to be widely available in mid-2024. At the moment, notes featuring the Queen are still circulating, and will remain valid even after Charles’ notes enter circulation.

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The View From Canada

Canada has yet to announce a formal plan for replacing the Queen with the new King on its banknotes, but if that does happen, it will be a few years off. According to the CBC, Canada is currently in the process of redesigning its $5 note, and it’s unlikely the country will begin the process of replacing the Queen’s portrait on the $20 bill before that.


It is likely that King Charles will appear on Canada’s coins.

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The View From New Zealand

Like Canada, New Zealand is several years away from replacing the Queen on its currency. Speaking to News Talk ZB, a spokesperson for the country’s reserve bank said it only pulls notes out of circulation if they’re too damaged. “We manufacture these notes infrequently and do not plan to destroy stock or shorten the life of existing banknotes just because they show the Queen,” the spokesperson said.

“This would be wasteful and poor environmental practice.”