CFP franc

Last updated
CFP franc
franc pacifique (French)
Billet 500 xpf.jpg
₣500 banknote
ISO 4217
1/100 centime
Banknotes500, 1000, 5000, 10 000 Francs CFP
Coins1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 Francs
User(s)Flag of French Polynesia.svg  French Polynesia
Flag of FLNKS.svg  New Caledonia
Flag of Wallis and Futuna.svg  Wallis and Futuna
Central bank Institut d’émission d’Outre-Mer (IEOM)
Inflation 0% (French Polynesia 2015 est.), 1.9% (New Caledonia 2017 est.)
Source The World Factbook
Pegged with 1000 XPF = 8.38 EUR

The CFP franc (called the franc in everyday use) is the currency used in the French overseas collectivities (collectivités d’outre-mer, or COM) of French Polynesia, New Caledonia and Wallis and Futuna. The initials CFP originally stood for Colonies Françaises du Pacifique (‘French colonies of the Pacific’). This was later changed to Communauté Financière du Pacifique (’Pacific Financial Community’) and then to the present term, Change Franc Pacifique (“Pacific Franc Exchange”). The ISO 4217 currency code is XPF.

A currency, in the most specific sense is money in any form when in use or circulation as a medium of exchange, especially circulating banknotes and coins. A more general definition is that a currency is a system of money in common use, especially for people in a nation. Under this definition, US dollars (US$), pounds sterling (£), Australian dollars (A$), European euros (€), Russian rubles (₽) and Indian Rupees (₹) are examples of currencies. These various currencies are recognized as stores of value and are traded between nations in foreign exchange markets, which determine the relative values of the different currencies. Currencies in this sense are defined by governments, and each type has limited boundaries of acceptance.

France Republic with majority of territory in Europe and numerous oversea territories around the world

France, officially the French Republic, is a sovereign state whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.02 million. France is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.

The French overseas collectivities, like the French regions, are first-order administrative divisions of France, but have a semi-autonomous status. The COMs include some former French overseas colonies and other French overseas entities with a particular status, all of which became COMs by constitutional reform on 28 March 2003. The COMs should not be confused with the overseas regions and overseas departments, which have the same status as Mainland France but are just located outside Europe. As integral parts of France, overseas collectivities are represented in the National Assembly, Senate and Economic and Social Council. Only one COM, Saint Martin, is part of the European Union and can vote to elect members of the European Parliament (MEPs). The Pacific COMs use the CFP franc, a currency pegged to the euro, whereas the Atlantic COMs use the euro directly. As of 31 March 2011, there were five COMs:




The CFP franc was created in December 1945, together with the CFA franc, used in Africa. The reason for the creation of these francs was the weakness of the French franc immediately after the Second World War. When France ratified the Bretton Woods Agreement in December 1945, the French franc was devalued in order to set a fixed exchange rate with the US dollar. New currencies were created in the French colonies to spare them the strong devaluation of December 1945. René Pleven, the French minister of finance, was quoted saying: “In a show of her generosity and selflessness, metropolitan France, wishing not to impose on her far-away daughters the consequences of her own poverty, is setting different exchange rates for their currency.” The CFA franc and the other colonial currencies were set at a fixed exchange rate with the French franc. However, the CFP franc was set at a fixed exchange rate with the US dollar, which played a major role in the economy of the French Pacific territories on account of World War II. That situation ended in September 1949 when the CFP franc was given a fixed exchange rate with the French franc.

CFA franc two African currencies

The CFA franc is the name of two currencies, the West African CFA franc, used in eight West African countries, and the Central African CFA franc, used in six Central African countries. Both currencies are guaranteed by the French treasury. Although separate, the two CFA franc currencies have always been at parity and are effectively interchangeable. The ISO currency codes are XAF for the Central African CFA franc and XOF for the West African CFA franc.

French franc Former currency of France

The franc, also commonly distinguished as the French franc (FF), was a currency of France. Between 1360 and 1641, it was the name of coins worth 1 livre tournois and it remained in common parlance as a term for this amount of money. It was reintroduced in 1795. After two centuries of inflation, it was revalued in 1960, with each new franc (NF) being worth 100 old francs. The NF designation was continued for a few years before the currency returned to being simply the franc; some mostly older French continued to reference and value items in terms of the old franc until the introduction of the euro in 1999 and 2002. The French franc was a commonly held international reserve currency of reference in the 19th and 20th centuries.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 70 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.


The CFP franc has been issued by the IEOM (Institut d’émission d’outre-mer, “Overseas Issuing Institute”) since 1967. The IEOM has its headquarters in Paris.

Paris Capital of France

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France, with an area of 105 square kilometres and an official estimated population of 2,140,526 residents as of 1 January 2019. Since the 17th century, Paris has been one of Europe's major centres of finance, diplomacy, commerce, fashion, science, and the arts. The City of Paris is the centre and seat of government of the Île-de-France, or Paris Region, which has an estimated official 2019 population of 12,213,364, or about 18 percent of the population of France. The Paris Region had a GDP of €709 billion in 2017. According to the Economist Intelligence Unit Worldwide Cost of Living Survey in 2018, Paris was the second most expensive city in the world, after Singapore, and ahead of Zürich, Hong Kong, Oslo and Geneva. Another source ranked Paris as most expensive, on a par with Singapore and Hong Kong, in 2018.

The currency was initially issued in three distinct forms for French Polynesia, New Caledonia and the New Hebrides. (See French Polynesian franc, New Caledonian franc and New Hebrides franc.) Wallis and Futuna used the New Caledonian franc. Although the banknotes of the New Hebrides bore the name of the territory, the notes of French Polynesia and New Caledonia could only be distinguished by the name of the capitals (Papeete and Nouméa, respectively) on the reverse of the notes.

French Polynesia French overseas country in the Southern Pacific ocean

French Polynesia is an overseas collectivity of the French Republic and its sole overseas country. It is composed of 118 geographically dispersed islands and atolls stretching over an expanse of more than 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) in the South Pacific Ocean. Its total land area is 4,167 square kilometres (1,609 sq mi).

New Caledonia Overseas territory of France in the southwest Pacific Ocean

New Caledonia is a special collectivity of France, currently governed under the Nouméa Accord, located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, to the south of Vanuatu, about 1,210 km (750 mi) east of Australia and 20,000 km (12,000 mi) from Metropolitan France. The archipelago, part of the Melanesia subregion, includes the main island of Grande Terre, the Loyalty Islands, the Chesterfield Islands, the Belep archipelago, the Isle of Pines, and a few remote islets. The Chesterfield Islands are in the Coral Sea. French people, and especially locals, refer to Grande Terre as Le Caillou.

New Hebrides former colony, now Vanuatu

New Hebrides, officially the New Hebrides Condominium and named for the Hebrides Scottish archipelago, was the colonial name for the island group in the South Pacific Ocean that is now Vanuatu. Native people had inhabited the islands for three thousand years before the first Europeans arrived in 1606 from a Spanish expedition led by Portuguese navigator Pedro Fernandes de Queirós. The islands were colonised by both the British and French in the 18th century, shortly after Captain James Cook visited.

In 1969, the New Hebrides franc was separated from the CFP franc and was replaced by the Vanuatu vatu in 1982.

The vatu is the currency of Vanuatu.

Since 1985

Billet 500 xpf.jpg

The new highest denomination 10,000 CFP franc banknote (€83.80) issued on 1 October 1986, was the first one that was not overprinted with a city name. The 500 franc banknote, issued in 1992, and the 1000 and 5000 franc banknotes, issued in 1995, are also without the overprint. The designs of the 500, 1000, 5000 franc banknotes did not change until 2014, when new designs and sizes were introduced.

Today, all banknotes are strictly identical from New Caledonia to French Polynesia. One side of the banknotes shows landscapes or historical figures of French Polynesia, while the other side of the banknotes shows landscapes or historical figures of New Caledonia.

The coins are still separated in two sets: one side of the coins is identical from New Caledonia to French Polynesia, while the other side of the coins is inscribed with the name Nouvelle-Calédonie in New Caledonia and in Wallis and Futuna, and with the name Polynésie française in French Polynesia. Both sets of coins can be used in all three French territories. The situation of the CFP coins is thus quite similar to that of the euro coins, which have a national side but can be used in all countries of the eurozone.

Historical exchange rates

The 1960 and 1999 events are merely changes in the currency in use in France; the relative value of the CFP franc (XPF) vs. the French franc / euro is unchanged since 1949.


In 1949, New Caledonia and what was then called French Oceania (now French Polynesia) began to issue coins. The coins have been separated in two types: the obverses are identical, whilst the reverses are distinct. Both types of coins can be used in all three French territories. The situation of the CFP coins is thus quite similar to that of the euro coins, which have a national side but can be used in all countries of the euro zone.

The New Hebrides franc had a different history of coin issuance before being replaced by the Vanuatu vatu in 1982.

The IEOM circulates in the French Pacific Colonies have two sets of metal coins with a face value of 100, 50, 20, 5, 2, and 1 XPF. The first series runs mainly in New Caledonia and Wallis and Futuna, the second in French Polynesia, although both series have distinct legal tender in each of the regions.

Each piece consisting of copper, nickel, magnesium or aluminum is designed by: first an obverse depicting a landscape, a fruit, an animal or a sculptural typical of the area, the name of the territory associated with the series, and the denomination on the other hand a reverse contained an allegorical representation (Minerva, goddess of wisdom or portrait of Marianne, symbol of the Republic), the initials of the bank issuing central (IEOM), the vintage (corresponding to the year of manufacture) and the words "French Republic" with a slight of the aspect is smooth or fluted.

Values 1, 2, and 5 Francs have aluminum and magnesium in both sets. 10, 20, and 50 Francs only have a nickel composition, meaning it was completely made of nickel until 2005, then copper nickel. The 100 Franc was made of nickel bronze until 2005, and from 2006 copper, nickel, and aluminum.

French Polynesian Coins
ImageValueTechnical parametersDescriptionCommon name
Franc 23 mm1.3g Aluminum
Plain Minerva Coast of French Polynesia

Kagu Bird
Two Francs27 mm2.2gTwo Franc
Five Francs31 mm3.5gFive Francs
Ten Francs24 mm6g100% Nickel to 2005
Copper-Nickel after 2006
Milled Marianne Tiki

10 Francs
20 Francs28.5 mm10g Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis)

20 Francs
50 Francs33 mm
15gCoastal Scenery with House

Hut with Pine
50 Francs
100 Francs30 mm10g Nickel
100 Francs
These images are to scale at 2.5 pixels per millimetre. For table standards, see the coin specification table.


The IEOM began issuing banknotes in New Hebrides in 1965, and in New Caledonia and French Polynesia in 1969. On 1 October 1986, a new banknote, the 10,000 francs, was introduced which did not bear any distinguishing mark and was common to both French Polynesia and New Caledonia. [1] These were followed, between 1992 and 1995, by 500, 1000 and 5000 franc notes for all of the French Pacific Territories.

The overall design has not changed since 1969. One side shows landscapes or historical figures of New Caledonia, while the other side of the banknotes shows landscapes or historical figures of French Polynesia.

On January 6, 2014, the IEOM has unveiled designs for a new series of banknotes. The new notes were issued on January 20. The older issues will circulate in parallel to the new series until the former will lose legal tender status on September 30, but can be exchanged indefinitely at the Institut d’Emission d’Outre-Mer offices. [2] [3] [4]


Before the French regulated the currency on Tahiti, French Polynesia, traders often used dollars. The word “dollar” became tārā (often written without accents as tara, or tala), and this term is still used among native Tahitian and local Chinese traders as an unofficial unit, worth 5 francs. Thus for a price of 200 francs, one would say tārā e maha-ʻahuru (40 tārā) in Tahitian. The currency of Samoa is also called the tālā.

Current XPF exchange rates

See also

Related Research Articles

French Polynesia's economy is one of a developed country with a service sector accounting for 75%. The GDP per capita is around $22,000, one of the highest in the Pacific area.

Economy of Wallis and Futuna

This page is an overview of the economy of Wallis and Futuna.

Tunisian dinar currency of Tunisia

The dinar is the currency of Tunisia. It is subdivided into 1000 milim or millimes (ملّيم). The abbreviation DT is often used in Tunisia, although writing "dinar" after the amount is also acceptable ; the abbreviation TD is also mentioned in a few places, but is less frequently used, given the common use of the French language in Tunisia, and the French derivation of DT.

Malagasy franc former currency of Madagascar

The franc, was the currency of Madagascar until January 1, 2005. It was subdivided into 100 centimes.

Belgian franc currency of the Kingdom of Belgium from 1832 until 2002

The Belgian franc was the currency of the Kingdom of Belgium from 1832 until 2002 when the Euro was introduced. It was subdivided into 100 subunits, known as centiemen (Dutch), centimes (French) or Centime (German).

Luxembourgish franc currency

The Luxembourgish franc was the currency of Luxembourg between 1854 and 1999. The franc remained in circulation until 2002, when it was replaced by the euro. During the period 1999–2002, the franc was officially a subdivision of the euro but the euro did not circulate. Under the principle of "no obligation and no prohibition", financial transactions could be conducted in euros and francs, but physical payments could be made only in francs, as euro notes and coins were not available yet.

Djiboutian franc currency of Djibouti

The Djiboutian franc is the currency of Djibouti. Its ISO 4217 currency code is DJF. Historically, it was subdivided into 100 centimes.

The franc is the official currency of Comoros. It is nominally subdivided into 100 centimes, although no centime denominations have ever been issued.

The Franc was the currency of the Anglo-French Condominium of the Pacific island group of the New Hebrides. It circulated alongside British and later Australian currency. The New Hebrides franc was nominally divided into 100 Centimes, although the smallest denomination was the 1 franc. Between 1945 and 1969, it was part of the CFP franc.

XPF may refer to:

The franc is the currency of New Caledonia and Wallis and Futuna. It is subdivided into 100 centimes. Since 1945, it has been part of the CFP franc.

The franc is the currency of French Polynesia. It is subdivided into 100 centimes. Since 1945, it has been part of the CFP franc.

The Saint Pierre and Miquelon franc was the currency of Saint Pierre and Miquelon during a short time.

The Institut d'émission d'outre-mer (IEOM) issues the CFP franc, the currency of the French overseas collectivities French Polynesia, New Caledonia, and Wallis and Futuna.

Overseas Territories of France (European Parliament constituency) constituency of the European Parliament

In European elections, Overseas Territories is a constituency of the European Parliament in France. It consists of all the inhabited French overseas departments and collectivities, even if their territory is not part of the European Union: constitutionally, all French citizens are also granted the same European citizenship, consequently all of them are electing their representants in the European Parliament, independently of their area of residence.


  1. Linzmayer, Owen (2012). "French Pacific Territories". The Banknote Book. San Francisco, CA:
  2. French Pacific Territories new notes to be introduced 20.01.2014 October 22, 2013. Retrieved on 2013-10-23.
  3. Official website for the new banknotes of the French Pacific Territories Archived 2015-11-04 at the Wayback Machine Institut d’Emission d’Outre-Mer ( Retrieved on 2013-10-23.
  4. French Pacific Territories new 2014 note family confirmed February 3, 2014. Retrieved on 2014-02-04.