While the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RMB) says reports that counterfeits of the newly introduced K2,000 bank note now in circulation should not be cause for worry, an economic commentator has described the development as the major disadvantage of having big currency notes in circulation.

Social media is awash with messages
cautioning Malawians to be on the
lookout for a fake K2,000 note being
circulated by counterfeiters.
But RBM Publicist, Mbane Ngwira, said
the risk of counterfeits is always there
in currency operations and RBM
cannot rule it out completely but only
manage it.
He, however, said the security features
that are on the new K2,000 note are
the latest in the note issuance industry
and cannot be easily duplicated.
“You will notice that our know your
currency campaign has always been
there and is an ongoing process. This
campaign is always intensified when a
new note is introduced.
“Our call is for all stakeholders to take
time to understand those security
features and be able to separate
counterfeits from real notes,” he said.
Ngwira said if the fake note eludes the
eye of traders banks are the first line
of defence as people deposit the
“We are therefore calling on all
stakeholders to be vigilant against fake
currencies, not just the new K2,000
but all notes that are in circulation
because they are prone to
counterfeits,” he said.
But Professor of Economics at
Chancellor College, Ben Kalua, said
counterfeit money is one of the
dangers of having higher currencies in
Kalua said higher denominations
become more profitable to
counterfeiters. He said an increase in
counterfeit money led the United
Kingdom to suppress the circulation of
its £50 a few years ago.
“Counterfeiters are not fools. What is
important is that we have to be on high
alert to avoid being duped,” he said.
Kalua said the introduction of the
K2,000 bank note was not strategic but
a decision that had to be done to
control inflation.
“Malawians were caught unawares but
it had to be done,” he said.
The K2,000 note was released into
circulation last week. Governor of the
Reserve Bank, Charles Chuka, earlier
said plans to introduce the new
currency were necessitated by the
depreciation of the kwacha and rising