Zambian Money

The old Zambian money was measured in Kwacha and Ngwee, just like the new rebased currency which came into circulation on 1st January 2013.

Kwacha and ngwee is a phrase in one of the local Zambian languages. Kwacha and Ngwee stands for “Its dawn and clear!”, referring to the freedom and independence which was granted after a vicious struggle with the colonial Masters.

The old Zambian currency was denoted by the symbol ZMK. The Kwacha is divided into 100 ngwees.

In the year 2003, the Zambian government as the first African country, printed its K 500 and K1, 000 notes on polymer.


The old currency had a fifty thousand kwacha note as the highest denomination note , followed by twenty thousand, ten thousand, five thousand, one thousand, five hundred, two hundred, fifty kwacha, and twenty kwacha notes.

The old notes featured an African Fish Eagle on one side and various animals on the reverse side.

image 1 Old Fifty Thousand Note

image 1 Old Fifty Thousand Note - Reverse Side

Zambian Kwacha to 1 USD

The Kwacha had been divided into 100 ngwees. However, due to inflationary pressures, prices were rounded up to the nearest fifty kwacha using the old currency. As of 1st January 2013, the day of rebasing from the old to the new Zambian money, the old Kwacha was approximately, US$1.00 equal to Zmk 5,100.00. The old kwacha will be in circulation side by side with the new one untill 30th June 2013.

Zambian Banks

Banks are found in major towns. Here's is a list of Zambian Banks:
  • Bank of Zambia (central bank).
  • Standard Chartered Bank Zambia Plc.
  • National Bank Zambia Limited
  • Intermarket Banking Corporation Limited
  • Cavmont Capital Bank Limited
  • Investrust Bank Plc.
  • Barclays Bank Zambia Plc.
  • First Alliance Bank Zambia Limited
  • Zambia National Commercial Bank
  • Citibank Zambia Limited
  • Indo-Zambia Bank Limited
  • Access Bank Zambia Limited
  • United Bank for Africa Zambia Limited
  • National Savings and Credit Bank
  • International Commercial Bank,
  • Banc ABC Zambia Limited
  • Bank of China (Zambia) Limited
  • Ecobank Zambia Limited
  • First National Bank of Zambia Limited
  • Stanbic Bank Zambia Limited


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