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Lao kip

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Title: Lao kip  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: French Indochinese piastre, Economy of Laos, Cambodian riel, Kingdom of Laos, Laos
Collection: 1952 Introductions, Currencies of Laos, Currency Symbols, Economy of Laos
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Lao kip

Lao kip
ເງີນກີບລາວ (Lao)
1000 kip issued in 1996
ISO 4217 code LAK
Central bank Bank of the Lao P.D.R.
User(s) Lao People's Democratic Republic
Inflation 3.92%
 Source Bank of the Lao P.D.R, December 2009.
 1/100 att
Symbol ₭ or ₭N
 Rarely used 10, 20, 50 att
 Freq. used 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, 100,000 kip
 Rarely used 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 kip

The kip (Lao: ກີບ; code: LAK; sign: or N; Official Name: ເງີນກີບລາວ, lit. "Currency Lao Kip") is the currency of Laos since 1952. One kip is divided into 100 att (ອັດ), however, due to their low value, coins in general are very hard to come by in circulation.


  • Lao Kip exchange rate 1
  • History 2
    • Free Lao Kip (1946) 2.1
    • Royal kip (1952) 2.2
      • Coins 2.2.1
      • Banknotes 2.2.2
    • Pathet Lao kip (1976) 2.3
    • Lao PDR kip (1979) 2.4
      • Coins 2.4.1
      • Banknotes 2.4.2
  • See also 3
  • References 4

Lao Kip exchange rate


Free Lao Kip (1946)

In 1945–1946, the Free Lao government in Vientiane issued a series of paper money in denominations of 10, 20 and 50 att and 10 kip before the French authorities took control of the region.

Royal kip (1952)

The kip was reintroduced in 1952, replacing the French Indochinese piastre at par. The kip (also called a piastre in French) was sub-divided into 100 att (Lao: ອັດ) or cents (French: Centimes).


Coins were issued in denominations of 10, 20 and 50 att or cents with French and Lao inscriptions. All were struck in aluminium and had a hole in the centre, like the Chinese cash coins. The only year of issue was 1952.


100 kip, 1957 issue

In 1953, the Laos branch of the Institut d'Emission des Etats du Cambodge, du Laos et du Vietnam issued notes dual denominated in piastre and kip. At the same time, the two other branches had similar arrangement with the riel in Cambodia and the đồng in South Vietnam. There were notes for 1, 5, 100 and 100 kip/piastres.

In 1957, the government issued notes denominated solely in kip. The notes were for 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 kip printed by the Security Banknote Company, 100 kip printed by the Banque de France and a commemorative 500 kip printed by Thomas De la Rue. 1 and 5 kip notes printed by Bradbury & Wilkinson, and a 10 kip by De la Rue were introduced by 1962.

In 1963, 20, 50, 200 and 1000 kip notes were added, all printed by De la Rue. These were followed by 100, 500 and 5000 kip notes in 1974–75, again by De La Rue. A 1975 10 kip by Bradbury & Wilkinson and a 1000 kip by De la Rue were printed but not circulated.

Pathet Lao kip (1976)

The Pathet Lao kip was introduced some time before 1976 in the areas which were under the control of the Pathet Lao. Banknote denominations of 1, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 kip were issued. The notes were printed in China.

In 1976, the Pathet Lao kip replaced the Royal kip throughout Laos following the Pathet Lao's take over of the country. The exchange rate between the two kip was 1 Pathet Lao kip = 20 royal kip.

Lao PDR kip (1979)

On 16 December 1979, the old Pathet Lao “Liberation” kip was replaced by the new Lao kip at a rate of 100 to 1.[1]


Coins were again issued in Laos for the first time in 28 years in 1980 with denominations of 10, 20 and 50 att, with each being struck in aluminum and depicting the state emblem on the obverse and agricultural themes on the reverse. These were followed by commemorative 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 kip in 1985 for the 10 year anniversary of the Lao People's Democratic Republic. However, due to the economic toll of the Soviet collapse in 1991 and the persistence of chronic inflation there are no coins currently in circulation in Laos.


In 1979, banknotes were introduced in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 kip. 500 kip notes were added in 1988, followed by 1000 kip in 1992, 2000 and 5000 kip in 1997, 10,000 and 20,000 kip in 2002 and 50,000 kip on January 17, 2006 (although dated 2004). On November 15, 2010 a 100,000 kip banknote was issued to commemorate the 450th anniversary of the founding of the capital, Vientiane and the 35th anniversary of the establishment of the Lao People's Democratic Republic.[2][3][4] Kaysone Phomvihane is pictured on the obverse of the 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, and 100,000 kip banknotes.

The Bank of Laos governor has made an announcement on January 25, 2012 that Bank of Laos is going to issue 100,000 Kip banknotes as a regular issue on February 1, 2012 (although dated 2011) as the measure to encourage Lao people to use the national currency instead of U.S. dollars and Thai baht.[5][6][7]

See also


  1. ^ Linzmayer, Owen (2012). "Laos". The Banknote Book. San Francisco, CA: 
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ Laos new 100,000-kip commemorative confirmed Retrieved 2012-01-31
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Laos new 100,000 kip note confirmed Retrieved 2012-02-03.
Royal kip
Preceded by:
French Indochinese piastre
Location: French Indochina
Reason: independence
Ratio: at par
Note: piastre not used in self-declared North Vietnam since 1946
Currency of Laos
1952 – 1976
Note: transitional notes dual denominated in piastre and kip were used until 1957
Succeeded by:
Pathet Lao kip
Reason: inflation and new communist rule
Ratio: 1 Pathet Lao kip = 20 royal kip
Pathet Lao kip
Preceded by:
Royal kip
Reason: inflation and new communist rule
Ratio: 1 Pathet Lao kip = 20 royal kip
Currency of Laos
1976 – 1979
Succeeded by:
Lao PDR kip
Reason: inflation
Ratio: 1 Lao PDR kip = 100 Pathet Lao kip
Lao PDR kip
Preceded by:
Pathet Lao kip
Reason: inflation
Ratio: 1 Lao PDR kip = 100 Pathet Lao kip
Currency of Laos
1979 –
Succeeded by:
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