Home / General Information / List of Currencies / British North Borneo Dollar

Information about currency: British North Borneo Dollar

Currency nameBritish North Borneo Dollar
CountryNorth Borneo
Dates1882 - 1953

1 Dollar = 100 Cents


The British North Borneo dollar was the currency of British North Borneo from 1882 to 1953. It was subdivided into 100 cents. The dollar had remained at par with the Straits dollar (and its successor the Malayan dollar), the currency of Malaya and Singapore, at the value of one dollar to 2 shillings 4 pence sterling from its introduction until both currencies were replaced by the Malaya and British Borneo dollar in 1953. Both coins and banknotes are issued by the British North Borneo Company.

During the Japanese occupation period (1942–1945), paper money was issued in denominations ranging from 1 cent to 1000 dollars. This currency was fixed at 1 dollar = 1 Japanese yen, compared to a 1:2 pre-war rate. Following the war, the Japanese occupation currency was declared worthless and the previous issues of the British North Borneo dollar regained their value relative to sterling (two shillings four pence).

Coins were first minted in values of 1⁄2 cent and 1 cent in copper, and later 1 cent, 2 1⁄2 cents, and 5 cents in copper-nickel, and 25 cents in silver. Originally they were issued under the name
"British North Borneo" and later under "State of North Borneo" starting in 1903. All coins depicted the state crest on the obverse and denomination on the reverse. These were last minted in 1938 and later phased out by coins of the Malayan dollar.

Banknotes were printed in values of 25 cents, 50 cents, $1, $5, $10, and $25. The design of the banknotes did not change much during the currency's lifetime. However, their physical sizes tend to shrink over time. They either show the coat of arms, Mount Kinabalu, or both.

Currency British North Borneo Dollar was used:
Country From To
North Borneo British North Borneo Dollar 1882 1953
Coin types of currency British North Borneo Dollar:
Twenty Five Cents 1929 - 1929

Five Cents 1903 - 1941

Two and a Half Cents 1903 - 1920

One Cent 1882 - 1941
  One Cent (Copper) 1882 - 1907
  One Cent (CuproNickel) 1904 - 1941

Half Cent 1885 - 1907