In pre-colonial times, African currency included ingots, gold dust, shells, iron, arrowheads, goats, salt, cattle, beads, axes, blankets, etc. This started to change from the seventeenth century. Various colonial powers introduced their own currencies to their colonies.
Today African nations have their own currencies. Here are the top five most valuable currencies in Africa as of 2015, with their value in US dollars.
5) Egyptian pound (1 EGP = $0.14)
Egyptian pound, which is divided into 100 piastres, is the currency of Egypt. All Egyptian banknotes are bilingual (Arabic and English).
4) Sudanese pound (1 SDG = $0.18)
The Sudanese pound is the currency of Sudan. The banknotes and coins are bilingual.
3) Ghanaian cedi (1 GHS = $0.31)
The Ghanaian cedi is the currency of Ghana. It was introduced on July 1 2007. The word cedi is derived from the Akan word for cowry shell which was once used in Ghana as currency.
2) Tunisian dinar (1 TND = $0.56)
Tunisian dinar, which is subdivided into 1000 milim, is the currency of Tunisia. It is a criminal offence in Tunisia to import or export dinar. Once a year, a Tunisian citizen can convert up to 6,000 Tunisian dinars into foreign currency.
1) Libyan dinar (1 LYD = $0.83)
Libyan dinar, which is subdivided into 1000 dirham, is the currency of Libya. It is the most valuable currency in Africa. It was introduced in September 1971. It is issued by the Central Bank of Libya.
In many rural areas in Africa, there is still a bartering culture; however, things are changing slowly.