Currency - Malaysian ringgit

Currency  >  Malaysian ringgit

Malaysian ringgit

RM
The Malaysian ringgit (plural: ringgit; symbol: RM; currency code: MYR; formerly the Malaysian dollar) is the currency of Malaysia. It is divided into 100 sen (cents). The ringgit is issued by the Bank Negara Malaysia.

The word ringgit is an obsolete term for "jagged" in Malay and was originally used to refer to the serrated edges of silver Spanish dollars which circulated widely in the area during the 16th and 17th century Portuguese colonial era. In modern usage ringgit is used almost solely for the currency. Due to the common heritage of the three modern currencies, the Singapore dollar and the Brunei dollar are also called ringgit in Malay (currencies such as the US and Australian dollars are translated as dolar), although nowadays the Singapore dollar is more commonly called dolar in Malay. To differentiate between the three currencies, the Malaysian currency is referred to as Ringgit Malaysia, hence the official abbreviation and currency symbol RM. Internationally, the ISO 4217 currency code for Malaysian ringgit is MYR.

The Malay names ringgit and sen were officially adopted as the sole official names in August 1975. Previously they had been known officially as dollars and cents in English and ringgit and sen in Malay, and in some parts of the country this usage continues. In the northern states of Peninsular Malaysia, denominations of 10 sen are called kupang in Malay ("poat 8 " in Hokkien, "Jiao" 角 in Mandarin), e.g. 50 sen is 5 kupang ("5 poat 8 " in Hokkien, "wujiao" 五角 in Mandarin).

On 12 June 1967, the Malaysian dollar, issued by the new central bank, Bank Negara Malaysia, replaced the Malaya and British Borneo dollar at par. The new currency retained all denominations of its predecessor except the $10,000 denomination, and also brought over the colour schemes of the old dollar. Over the course of the following decades, minor changes were made on the notes and coins issued, from the introduction of the M$1 coin in 1967, to the discontinuation of RM500 and RM1,000 notes in 1996.

As the Malaysian dollar replaced the Malaya and British Borneo dollar at par and Malaysia was a participating member of the sterling area, the new dollar was originally valued at 8.57 dollars per 1 British pound sterling. In November 1967, five months after the introduction of the Malaysian dollar, the pound was devalued by 14.3%, leading to a collapse in confidence for the sterling area and its demise in 1972. The new currency was not affected but earlier notes of the Malaya and British Borneo dollar were still pegged at 8.57 dollars per 1 pound; consequently these notes were reduced in value to 85 cents per dollar.

Despite the emergence of new currencies in Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, the Interchangeability Agreement which the three countries adhered to as original members of the currency union meant the Malaysian dollar was exchangeable at par with the Singapore dollar and Brunei dollar. This ended on 8 May 1973, when the Malaysian government withdrew from the agreement. The Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Brunei Currency and Monetary Board still maintain the interchangeability of their two currencies, as of 2017.

In 1993, the currency symbol "RM" (Ringgit Malaysia) was introduced to replace the use of the dollar sign "$" (or "M$").

Between 1995 and 1997, the ringgit was trading as a free float currency at around 2.50 to the US dollar, but following the onset of the 1997 East Asian financial crisis, the ringgit witnessed major dips to under 3.80 MYR/USD by the end of 1997 as a result of capital flight. During the first half of 1998, the currency fluctuated between 3.80 and 4.40 MYR/USD, before Bank Negara Malaysia moved to peg the ringgit to the US dollar in September 1998, maintaining its 3.80 MYR/USD value while remaining floated against other currencies. In addition, the ringgit was designated non-tradeable outside of Malaysia in 1998 to stem the flow of money out of the country.

While the printing of RM500 and RM1,000 notes had ceased in 1996 in response to risks of money laundering and capital flight, the underestimated effects of the financial crisis prompted the central bank to completely discontinue the use of the notes in 1999 by demonitising remaining notes in circulation, thereby ceasing to be of legal tender and being only exchangeable directly at the central bank; at the time of the demonetization, RM500 and RM1,000 notes were each worth approximately US$130 and US$260 respectably, based on the 3.80 MYR/USD peg rate. Despite these measures, some 7.6% of RM500 notes and 0.6% of RM1,000 notes remain in circulation as of 30 January 2011. During a 2011 parliamentary session, then Deputy Finance Minister Donald Lim Siang Chai asserted that a total of 150,599 and 26,018 pieces of RM500 and RM1,000 notes (RM75,299,500 worth of RM500 notes and RM26,018,000.00 worth of RM1,000 notes) have yet to be withdrawn through the central bank.

The ringgit lost 50% of its value against the US dollar between 1997 and 1998, and suffered general depreciation against other currencies between December 2001 and January 2005. As of 4 September 2008, the ringgit has yet to regain its value circa 2001 against the Singapore dollar (2.07 to 2.40 MYR/SGD), the euro (3.40 to 4.97 MYR/EUR), the Australian dollar (1.98 to 2.80 MYR/AUD ), and the British pound (5.42 to 6.10 MYR/GBP ).

Country

Malaysia

Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia. The federal constitutional monarchy consists of 13 states and three federal territories, separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia (Malaysian Borneo). Peninsular Malaysia shares a land and maritime border with Thailand in the north and maritime borders with Singapore in the south, Vietnam in the northeast, and Indonesia in the west. East Malaysia shares land and maritime borders with Brunei and Indonesia and a maritime border with the Philippines and Vietnam. Kuala Lumpur is the national capital and largest city while Putrajaya is the seat of federal government. With a population of over 30 million, Malaysia is the world's 44th most populous country. The southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai, is in Malaysia. In the tropics, Malaysia is one of 17 megadiverse countries, with large numbers of endemic species.

Malaysia has its origins in the Malay kingdoms which, from the 18th century, became subject to the British Empire when the Straits Settlements became British protectorates. Peninsular Malaysia was unified as the Malayan Union in 1946. Malaya was restructured as the Federation of Malaya in 1948, and achieved independence on 31 August 1957. Malaya united with North Borneo, Sarawak, and Singapore on 16 September 1963 to become Malaysia. In 1965, Singapore was expelled from the federation. The country is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural, which plays a large role in its politics. About half the population is ethnically Malay, with large minorities of Malaysian Chinese (the second largest community of Overseas Chinese in the world), Malaysian Indians, and indigenous peoples. The constitution grants freedom of religion but recognises Islam as the established religion of the state. The government system is closely modelled on the Westminster parliamentary system and the legal system is based on common law. The head of state is the king, known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. He is an elected monarch chosen from the hereditary rulers of the nine Malay states every five years. The head of government is the Prime Minister. The country's official language is Bahasa Melayu, commonly known as the Malay language. English remains an active second language. In 2017, English proficiency in Malaysia was ranked the 2nd best in Asia (after Singapore) and the 13th best in the world.

Language

Malaysian ringgit (English)  Ringgit malaysiano (Italiano)  Maleisische ringgit (Nederlands)  Ringgit (Français)  Malaysischer Ringgit (Deutsch)  Ringgit malaio (Português)  Малайзийский ринггит (Русский)  Ringgit (Español)  Ringgit (Polski)  馬來西亞令吉 (中文)  Ringgit (Svenska)  Ringgit (Română)  リンギット (日本語)  Малайзійський рингіт (Українська)  Малайзийски рингит (Български)  말레이시아 링깃 (한국어)  Malesian ringgit (Suomi)  Ringgit (Bahasa Indonesia)  Malaizijos ringitas (Lietuvių)  Malajsijský ringgit (Česky)  Ringgit (Türkçe)  Малезијски рингит (Српски / Srpski)  Maláj ringgit (Magyar)  Malezijski ringit (Hrvatski)  ริงกิต (ไทย)  Ρινγκίτ (Ελληνικά)  Ringgit (Tiếng Việt) 
 mapnall@gmail.com