There’s ‘no appetite’ to put King Charles on Eastern Caribbean currency

There’s just wall-to-wall disrespect for King Charles in the UK and abroad. I love it! People stayed quiet in the last years of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, but now that Charles is in charge, Commonwealth countries are beginning the slow and steady process of phasing out the British monarchy. Incidentally, in an embarrassing move for Charles, the Shetland Islands will not declare Charles’s coronation weekend a national holiday. Shetland’s council has said that it won’t be a bank holiday or school holiday for them. Ouch. Even worse, the Caribbean nations are increasingly looking to remove the British monarch from their currency.

Could Queen Elizabeth II be the last British monarch to feature on the currency of the Eastern Caribbean? Eastern Caribbean Central Bank Governor Timothy NJ Antoine alluded to that possibility, saying his evaluation was that there is “no appetite” in the region for its continuation.

Speaking at a media briefing as the ECCB sought to highlight its 40th anniversary calendar of events, Governor Antoine said that the decision would be left up to the Monetary Council, which is made up of the member states’ Finance Ministers.

“With the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, it is a fair question: what comes next? That is a decision that our Monetary Council, most of whom are Prime Ministers, will make in due course,” he said. The death of Queen Elizabeth last year has reopened the debate on the type of relationship that former British colonies in the Commonwealth, including many of the Eastern Caribbean states, will have with the United Kingdom.

The Reserve Bank of Australia—its central bank—has already announced its intention to not include King Charles’ portrait on its $5 banknote (although Royal Australian Mint noted that King Charles will replace his mother on the country’s coins).

Governor Antoine said, regardless of the decision made by the Monetary Council, it would be years before any change is made about a new banknote design.

“I have said before that there is no imminent change to our existing currency; we have in stock three to four years of mint condition [bank]notes. We are not going to burn them up or throw them away, we invested heavily in them,” he explained. The ECCB Governor continued that, in his discussions around the region, there was more interest in replacing the monarch with another Caribbean icon.

[From Antigua Observer]

I’ve said this before, but I honestly believe that Charles has pretty much made his peace with the fact that he’s going to “lose” the Caribbean commonwealth nations, that those countries will all seek to become republics in his reign. Charles is much more focused on “keeping” Canada, Australia and New Zealand as part of his “empire.” The thing is, it feels like every commonwealth country is on the same page: there’s “no appetite” to continue with this farce, that the British monarchy should be localized to only the UK, that there’s a need to phase out all of this bullsh-t.

— CaribbeanNewsNetwork (@caribbeannewsuk) February 16, 2023

Photos courtesy of Instar.

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