Changing change: goodbye five-cent coins, goodbye R9,95 specials

2011-11-26 00:00

CONSUMERS may have to dig deeper into their pockets as South Africa says goodbye to the five-cent coin.

Shop owners in Pietermartizburg say they will have to round off to the nearest 10 cents.

“Sometimes we will have to overprice a little bit to make sure that this doesn’t affect our business,” said the owner of a coffee shop in the city.

One trader told Weekend Witness that a product that was previously priced at R9,95 will now be rounded off to R10.

Government spokesperson Jimmy Mannyi announced this week that the five-cent coin will no longer be produced by the South African Mint after April 1 next year.

The 10-cent coin will be replaced with a new coin from the same date, he said.

It will be the same size, but the metal content will change from bronze-plated steel to copper-plated steel, which will be cheaper to produce.

A spokesperson for the SA Reserve Bank said five-cent coins will remain legal tender and there are enough in circulation to last a long time.

Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business chief executive officer Melanie Veness said she doesn’t see that the change will have much of an impact on business at all.

“I have spoken to some of our retail members, and they have indicated that they welcome the discontinuation of the five-cent coin.

“In general they say that they are already rounding off the prices of their goods to whole numbers,” said Veness.

Some members told her they doubt that their customers see much value in the five-cent coin, because they are often left on the counter or dropped in the streets.

• mlondi.radebe@witness.co.za

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