RIYADH – The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) has warned those seeking banknotes to decorate bouquets of flowers will face penal action similar to penalties for counterfeiters.
“The Special Penal Code on Counterfeiting shall be made applicable on those involved in such illegal activity. The law stipulates that any person, who deliberately changes features of currency notes, which is in circulation in the Kingdom, or distorts or tears or washes by chemical means, or loses weight and size or partially damages it by any means, shall be punished by imprisonment for a period ranging between three and five years and a fine of not less than SR3,000 and not exceeding SR10,000 or either of these penalties.
Okaz/Saudi Gazette has learnt from sources that the central bank has directed the Council of Saudi Chambers to prevent flower dealers from using chemical solutions to decorate flower bouquets, saying that this would lead to damaging of banknotes. It noted that many people approached the bank to replace damaged notes with new ones.
In its letter, SAMA stressed that the use of banknotes in bouquets of flowers accompanied by chemical solutions affects the general impression about banknotes, in a way mitigating the feelings of respect toward it as a national symbol to be preserved, with the need to use them only through the channels that have been created for them.
SAMA had previously addressed a letter to the Ministry of Commerce and Investment, asking it to prohibit the use of images and designs of currencies in circulation for commercial and other businesses without obtaining a license to reproduce the currency images from SAMA.
This comes after SAMA monitored the continuation of selling products bearing pictures of the official currency by some markets and shops in the Kingdom, which is punishable under the penal law provision to prevent counterfeiting.
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