In August 2008, the central bank issued new “cheques,” which—due to political, financial, and social reasons—it claims are not banknotes even though they circulate like legal tender and do not require endorsement. They were introduced to replace the array of high-denomination promissory notes which private banks had been issuing to enable their customers to carry out large transactions and which are now banned as the central bank has moved to reassert control over the money supply. Branch banks often stamp the back of these cheques with the branch name and date. Cheques are purchased from banks to use in large transactions and then are transferred between individuals in the same way as cash, but are canceled when presented at banks for deposit.
The planned October 2008 introduction of a 2,000,000-rial cheque was cancelled after Mahmoud Bahmani was appointed governor of the bank in 2008 following President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s dismissal of Tahmasb Mazaheri in September. However, the note was eventually introduced in 2023.
B291.5 (PNL): 2,000,000 rials (US$50)
Light blue, green, and yellow. Front: Farsi text; Karun-3 hydroelectric dam on the Karun river in Khuzestan province. Back: English and Farsi text; calligraphic text (Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran); Islamic design of flower. Windowed security thread with demetalized 2000000. Solid security thread with printed Farsi script. Watermark: Ferdowsi (Hakīm Abu’l-Qasim Firdawsī Tūsī) and electrotype denomination. Printer: (TAKAB). 160 x 75 mm. Paper.
a. No date. Sig. Mazaheri. Intro: 2023.
Courtesy of Yavar Parhizi.