South African Rand

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South African Rand

The currency of South Africa. It was introduced in 1961, replacing the South African pound when South Africa became fully independent from the United Kingdom. It was a very valuable currency for most of its early history, but mounting international pressure over apartheid and the uncertainty during reforms since then have greatly weakened it. It has been marked by fairly steady depreciation since the mid-1980s. However, it is a regionally important currency, being used in Namibia and Zimbabwe as well as South Africa.