Democratic Republic of the Congo / 1 Products

The Democratic Republic of the Congo stands as the second-largest nation in Central Africa in terms of land area. The country has grappled with enduring challenges such as political instability, inadequate infrastructure, widespread corruption, and commercial and colonial extraction and exploitation. On a brighter note, the nation is endowed with abundant natural resources. 

The Congolese franc is the country’s currency, subdivided into 100 centimes. The currency began in 1887 during the Congo Free State. From 1916, its circulation extended to Ruanda-Urundi. 

In 1951, the Central Bank of the Belgian Congo and Ruanda-Urundi was established and issued coins and banknotes, operating within the Belgian monetary zone. From 1952, the currency was jointly issued with the names of the Belgian Congo and Ruanda-Urundi. 

Following the 1960 Democratic Republic of the Congo's independence from Belgium, Ruanda-Urundi adopted its own franc. Despite legal ambiguities, the Congolese franc functioned as the de facto currency until 1960. It continued as Congo's currency until it was replaced by zaire in 1967, when the country changed its name to Zaire.

Holed copper coins alongside cupro-nickel and brass coins featuring crowned monograms were introduced in 1887, and silver coins of 50 centimes, and 1, 2, and 5 francs featuring King Leopold II. 

Minting ceased in 1929, resuming in 1936 with the introduction of 5-franc nickel-bronze coins. Various coin types, including hexagonal brass coins, and silver and aluminum coins, were introduced between 1943 and 1965. Coins often featured French or Dutch legends and Belgian monarchs.

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