The value of a currency in today’s world is decided by a number of factors which include inflation, market forces within the country, its supply and demand, the foreign exchange market, and more
These factors put together, determine the currencies that should be referred to as the highest currencies in the world.
With Africa’s diverse economic landscape, there are significant variations in the value of currencies across different African countries
In this article, we will take a look at the African continent and see the countries with the most valuable currencies using their exchange rate against the United States dollar as a benchmark to determine their value.
From the oil-rich countries of North Africa to the mineral-rich nations of Southern Africa, these currencies offer a glimpse into the economic realities of the countries in which they’re used.
If you’re searching for a list of the highest currencies in Africa, then this article has got you covered. Here, you will find a list of the 10 best-performing currencies on the African continent right now and what currency is the strongest African currency right now.
Top 10 Highest Currencies In Africa Today (Latest Ranking)
1) The Tunisian Dinar
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 3.05 TND
The Tunisian Dinar (TND) is the official currency of Tunisia, a North African country situated on the Mediterranean coast in the Maghreb region of North Africa.
TND is issued and maintained by the Central Bank of Tunisia and it is currently the strongest currency in Africa right now with a relatively stable exchange rate against other major currencies like the US Dollar, the Euro, and the British Pound.
Tunisia is blessed with a population of about 11,403,000 people (as of 2016) and very fertile land for agriculture. As a matter of fact, agriculture accounts for about 11.6% of the country’s GDP (estimated to be about $46.69 billion), industry 25%, and services 62.8%.
Talking about the industrial sector, Tunisia is mostly into the production of clothes, footwear, car parts, and electrical equipment.
The country was ranked the 40th most competitive economy in the world in 2009 and it is one of Africa’s best-performing economies right now.
2) The Libyan Dinar
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 4.73LYD
The Libyan dinar is currently the 2nd highest-performing currency in Africa right now. The Central Bank of Libya is responsible for issuing and managing the country’s currency.
For a country that was completely ravaged by war not too long ago and is still ravaged by war in some parts of its territory, Libya has done pretty well for itself in terms of economic development.
Its economy is among the largest and the most stable economies in Africa. That explains why citizens from other African nations are trooping to the Northern African nation in search of greener pastures.
The oil-rich nation brought to the limelight by its former popular head of state, Muammar Gaddafi also has natural gas and gypsum as its major resources.
With a GDP of $42.82 billion (via Google), the country officially known as the State of Libya has one of the economies (or best) economies on the African continent.
3) Moroccan Dirham
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 10.11 MAD
The Moroccan dirham is one of Africa’s strongest currencies and the third country from North Africa on this list with a very strong currency. Like other countries, the MAD is also issued and managed by the Moroccan Central Bank – Bank Al-Maghrib.
For a country that has been around for quite some time, the Kingdom of Morocco is not doing badly for itself in terms of its economic stability. The country currently has the 5th largest economy on the African continent.
The phosphorus-rich nation bordering the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea has seen massive developments under King Mohammed VI, the King of Morocco and Africa’s last absolute monarch.
Morocco is the third-largest producer of phosphorus in the world and one of the countries of the world with the highest phosphate reserves, trailing China and the United States of America.
Adding to the sale of Phosphates, seafood, agriculture, jewelry, manufacturing, and tourism contribute immensely to the annual GDP of this North African nation.
4) Ghanaian Cedis
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 10.82 CEDI
The Ghanaian Cedis is the only currency from West Africa to make it to this list of Africa’s highest currencies. It is currently ranked as the 4th highest currency in Africa with a relatively stable exchange rate against other major world currencies including the United States Dollar (USD).
According to WorldBank, “Ghana’s economy accelerated to 8.1% in 2017, driven by the mining and oil sectors, making it the second-fastest-growing African economy, trailing only Ethiopia.
WorldBank further reveals “in addition to the impact of the oil sector, gold output was high, while cocoa production levels remained stable.”
A few years ago, the Ghanaian Cedis wouldn’t have seen a place on this list. However, a commitment on the part of their government towards bettering the life of the citizens through strong and well-thought policies has led to the growth that we are seeing in the country presently.
Today Ghana has become one of the places other Africans (especially those from its neighboring countries) flock to in search of greener pastures.
With a population of 29.6 million as of 2018, this second-fastest-growing economy in Africa is gradually establishing itself as a major player in matters concerning the continent.
5) Botswana Pula
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 13.07 PULA
The Botswana Pula is the 5th highest currency in Africa.
Located in the Southern region of Africa, Botswana is a land-locked country and is among the strongest economies in Africa. As a matter of fact, the standard of living in the country is the same as that of Mexico.
According to Transparency International, Botswana is the least corrupt country in the whole of Africa. Blessed with lots of mineral resources (diamonds especially) and livestock, the country’s annual GDP is one of the highest in the continent.
With just a population of over 2 million people, this small African nation is really doing a lot to see its economy match that of other bigger countries in the continent.
6) Seychellois Rupee
Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 13.88 SCR
The Seychellois Rupee is the official currency of the Republic of Seychelles which is a small island located in the Indian Ocean off the coast of East Africa.
The SCR as is popularly referred to as is issued and managed by the Central Bank of Seychelles which is the country’s apex bank.
Although a small island nation, Seychelles currently has one of Africa’s best-performing economies. The economy of Seychelles is heavily dependent on tourism, fishing, and financial services.
Overall the Syechellois Rupee (SCR) is one of Africa’s highest currencies with a quite stable exchange rate against other currencies like the USD, EUR, and GBP.
7) Eritrea Nakfa
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 15.00 ERN
The Eritrean Nakfa is among the strongest currencies in Africa. The country which is located in East Africa is bordered by some other African countries namely Ethiopia, Sudan, and Djibouti.
The country which got its independence from Ethiopia in 1993, is rich in natural resources such as gold, granite, copper, marble, and potash. In 2011, Eritrea’s GDP saw a massive growth of about 8.7%, putting it on the list of the fastest-growing economy in the world.
The country is also serious about agriculture with 80% of its workforce employed in the sector.
Agricultural products such as sorghum, millet, barley, wheat, legumes, and livestock to mention just a few, are some of the main products of this country.
8) South African Rand
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 18.07 ZAR
The South African Rand is among the top African currencies with the most value. The ZAR occupies the 9th place on this list and it currently has an exchange rate of 18.07 ZAR to 1 USD.
This southernmost country in the African continent which is officially known as the Republic of South Africa has over the years established itself as a major player in the economy of the African continent.
With an estimated population of 57,725,600 (2018) and an R288.9 billion budget (2023), the country has achieved quite some significant level of success in just two decades from the apartheid to the extent, it is a member of the famous G20 – the only member country from Africa.
South Africa’s main industries include mining, automobile manufacturing, metalworking, machinery, textiles, commercial ship repairs, iron and steel, chemicals, foodstuffs, and more.
The country is known for exporting gold, diamonds, coal, automobiles, agricultural products, and military machinery for foreign exchange.
For a very long time, South Africa has been on the list of countries with the highest currencies in Africa, and with the rate at which they are advancing economically, they are only going to keep climbing higher on that list.
9) Zambian Kwacha
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 19.66 ZMK
The Zambian kwacha is the 9th most valuable currency in the African continent. The country is located in the south-central part of Africa, though some sources do refer to it as an East African country.
The land-locked country is bordered by the Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Malawi, and Tanzania.
In 2010, the country was rated among the fastest-growing economies in the world. The Republic of Zambia is blessed with lots of mineral resources such as Uranium, Nickel, Tin with Copper being the highest of them all.
Agriculture also contributes heavily to the country’s annual GDP with corn, tobacco, and wheat being among their top agricultural exports.
Tourism is another thing that contributes a whole lot to Zambia’s annual GDP with Victoria Falls located in the Southern part of the country being their major tourist attraction.
Next to that are the National Parks (the North Luangwa, South Luangwa, and Kafue) that are made up of different kinds of animals to attract tourists from several parts of the world.
10) Egyptian Pound
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 30.63 EGP
The Egyptian pound has been around for quite some time and is the 10th most valuable currency in Africa right now. The Arab Republic of Egypt as it is officially known is located in the North-Eastern region of Africa.
The country is bordered by Israel, Sudan, Libya, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Greece, Turkey, and Cyprus. Egypt is the third-most populated country in Africa (trailing Ethiopia and Nigeria) and the most populous country in the Arab world, the Middle East, and North Africa.
Egypt’s yearly revenue comes mostly from tourism, agriculture, liquid natural gas, and lots of other natural resources.
The Egyptian Pound which is the country’s official legal tender is issued and managed by the Central Bank of Egypt which is Egypt’s apex bank. Although the EGP has suffered some setbacks due to worsening conditions of the Egyptian economy, it is still one of the strongest currencies in Africa today.
11) Swazi Lilangeni
- Current Exchange Rate: 1 USD – 17.68 SZL
The Swazi Lilangeni is the currency of Eswatini (formerly known as Swaziland), a small landlocked country which is located in Southern Africa.
The country is bordered by Mozambique to its northeast while on its north, west, and south, it is bordered by South Africa. Though the “Kingdom of Eswatini” as it is formally called, is one of the smallest countries in Africa, it is among the countries with the strongest currencies in the continent.
Estwani exports sugar, textiles, forestry, and citrus mostly to South Africa (90%), the USA, and the EU from where it gets its foreign exchange.
In conclusion, although African currencies might not be among the strongest currencies in the world, especially when compared to the currencies used by world superpowers like the United States, China, Russia, Europe, the United Kingdom, and more, these currencies are still very valuable.
Here in this article, we shared an updated list of the strongest currencies in Africa with the Tunisian Dinar emerging as the highest currency on the African continent followed closely by the Libyan Dinar and the Morccan Diraham in second and third places respectively.
These currencies have different exchange rates and are used for various purposes, including trade, investment, and tourism.
And that will be it for this article. If you were searching for an up-to-date list of the currencies with the highest value (or exchange rate) right now, we hope you found the article helpful.