Manchukuo yuan

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Manchukuo yuan
Bank of Manchukuo 1 yuan (1932)
Central bank Central Bank of Manchou
User(s) Manchukuo Manchukuo
 1/1000 li
 1/100 fen
 1/10 chiao
Coins 5 li, 1, 5 fen, 1 chiao
Banknotes 1, 5, 10, 100, 1000
This infobox shows the latest status before this currency was rendered obsolete.

The Manchukuo yuan (滿洲國圓) was the official unit of currency of the Empire of Manchukuo, from June 1932 to August 1945.

The monetary unit was based on one basic pure silver patron of 23.91 grammes. It replaced the Chinese Haikwan tael, the local monetary system in common and regular use in Manchuria before the Mukden incident, as legal tender.


Initially bank notes and coins were produced minted by the Bank of Japan, but were later issued from the mint of the Central Bank of Manchou in the Manchukuo capital of Hsinking (now Changchun). Due to worldwide fluctuations in the price of silver during the 1930s, Manchukuo took the yuan off the silver standard in 1935 and subsequently pegged the yuan to, and later reached approximate exchange parity with, the Japanese yen. In 1940 the Manchukuo yuan was being used to measure Manchukuo exports and imports to countries that included America,[1] Germany and Japan.[2]

Throughout this period about half the value of the issued notes was backed by specie reserves. The notes issued were in five denominations, one hundred, ten, five and one yuan and five chiao (one-half yuan), and typically depicted Qing dynasty rulers of China on the obverse. To keep up with the inflationary pressures typically experienced by Japanese-controlled areas towards the end of World War II, a 1,000 yuan note was issued in 1944.

File:Manchukuo fiber coin.jpg
Manchukuo 5-fen fibre coin

The Yuan was subdivided into 10 chiao (角), 100 fen (分) or 1000 li (釐). Coins were issued in denominations of 5 li up to 10 fen.

In 1944 and 1945, Manchukuo issued coins (1 and 5 fen) made of what the "Standard Catalog of World Coins" describes as "red or brown fiber", resembling cardboard. These are a rare example of non-metallic coins.

In 1948, after the end of World War II, approximately 12 billion yuan of Central Bank of Manchou notes were redeemed by the Tung Pei Bank.


File:Manchukuo 10 Yuan 1937 front.jpg
10 Yuan note, 1937 (front) depicting the Cai Shen
File:Manchukuo 10 Yuan 1937 back.jpg
10 Yuan note, 1937 (back), depicting the Central Bank of Manchou headquarters
100 Yuan note, 1944 (front) depicting Confucius
File:Manchukuo 100 Yuan 1944 back.jpg
100 Yuan note, 1944 (back), depicting soy bean silos

See also


  1. Future of American Trade with Manchukuko, Roy H Akagi, 3 June 1940, accessed September 2009
  2. Germany and republican China, William C. Kirby 1984, p143, accessed September 2009