fijian dollar fiji currency parrot five dollars bird

Fiji Currency Spotlight

In Business and Currency by Continental Staff Comments

Fiji’s currency represents the country’s richness in natural beauty, as well as its sometime tumultuous politics. The favourable exchange rate, and picturesque landscape of Fiji make it a great tourist destination for Canadians and Americans.

FAST FACTS: Fijian Dollar

  • Symbol: FJ$
  • Currency Code: FJD
  • Subunits: cent (1/100)
  • Coins: ¢5, ¢10, ¢25, ¢50, $1, $2
  • Banknotes: $5, $10, $20, $50, $100
  • Central Bank: Reserve Bank of Fiji

History

The Fijian dollar was the currency of Fiji from 1867 to 1873, when it was replaced by the Fijian pound, which lasted until 1969 when it was replaced by the Second Fijian dollar at a rate of 1 pound = 2 dollars. Even after replacing the pound the Fijian dollar continued to depict the Queen until 2013 when the newest series finally opted for local flora and fauna instead. The Queen was removed from the latest series of banknotes released in 2012 after Fiji was expelled from the Commonwealth. Fiji has since been readmitted to the organisation, but the Queen’s position on the currency was not reinstated.

The choice of the name ‘dollar’ stems from the fact that when the currency changed to the decimal system (i.e. 100 cents in a dollar), it was also devalued by about 50%, putting it closer in value to the USD than the pound.

Notes and Coins

Coins

The original coins were minted in 1969 and 1975. They were the same size and style as those of (relatively) nearby Australia. New coins were minted in 1995, and then a later batch was minted by the Royal Canadian mint in 2009.

ValueObverseReverseDescription
5 centFoxface rabbitfishDrumNickel-clad steel
10 centFlying foxThrowing clubNickel-clad steel
20 centKadavu shining parrotWhale’s toothNickel-clad steel
50 centHumphead wrasseOutrigger canoeNickel-clad steel
1 dollarBanded iguanaDrinking vesselNickel-clad brass
2 dollarsPeregrine falconKava bowlNickel-clad brass
Notes

King Seru Epensisa Cakobau, a Fijian warlord who united many of the fractious tribes to create a united Fijian Kingdom, released a series of banknotes between 1871 and 1873. The latest series was released in 2012.

ValueObverseReverseColour
$5Canoe masthead as a registration device, parrot, and the Fijian coat of armsCrested iguana, Balaka palm, Masiratu, Mount ValiliGreen
$10Canoe masthead as a registration device, Beli fish and the Fijian coat of armsJoske’s Thumb, Grand Pacific HotelPurple
$20Canoe masthead as a registration device, Macgillivray storm bird, and the Fijian coat of armsFish processing, cutting lumber, mining, train, Mount NabukelevuBlue
$50Canoe masthead as a registration device, Tagimoucia flower, and the Fijian coat of armsCeremonial presentation of Tabua and Yaqona Red
$100Canoe masthead as a registration device, Nanai, and the Fijian coat of armsMap of Fiji, TourismYellow

Value

The Fijian dollar typically has fluctuated between around 2.18 and 2.03 to 1 USD over the last year.

FJD USD US dollar Fijian rate watch graph 5 years

FJD to 1 USD over the past 5 years (courtesy of Rate Watch)

FJD CAD Canadian dollar Fijian rate watch graph 5 years

FJD to 1 CAD over the past 5 years (courtesy of Rate Watch)

Economy

Fiji’s economy is one of the highest developed in the region, but it is still considered a developing country. Agriculture employs about 70% of the labourforce, and accounts for 18% of GDP. Sugar cane is responsible for as much as ⅓ of all industry in Fiji.

Emigration resulting from political uncertainty and underdevelopment has been a long standing issue for the economy, although remittances now account for as much as FJ$200 million per year. Much of the island is also communally owned, creating a complex system of property law for prospective investors. The country also has a large trade deficit as a result of the need to import many goods. Tourism is a major source of income for Fiji.

fijian dollar currency fiji queen elizabeth II monarch england

The bottom line

Fiji’s economy is on track for success as long as political stability takes root. Fiji has amazing natural sights, and a favourable exchange rate for Canadian and American tourists.


Learn much more about Fiji with out Country Profile and Travel Guide.

Stay informed. Stay Current.