The gourde or goud (Haitian Creole) is the currency of Haiti. Its ISO 4217 code is HTG and it is divided into 100 centimes (French) or santim (Creole).
First Gourde, 1813-1870
The first gourde was introduced in 1813 and replaced the
livre at a rate of 1 gourde = 8 livres and 5 sous.
The first issues of
coins were silver pieces of 6, 12 and 25 centimes. In 1827, 50 and 100 centimes
coins were introduced, followed by 1 and 2 centimes in 1828. In 1846 and 1850,
6¼ centimes coins were issued as well as 6 centimes pieces. In 1863, bronze
coins, produced by the Heaton mint of Birmingham, were issued. These were in
denominations of 5, 10 and 20 centimes and were the last coins of the first
The governments of Haiti issued paper money in denominations
of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 25, 50, 100 and 500 gourdes.
Second Gourde, 1870-1872
In 1870 the gourde was revalued at a rate of ten to one. Only banknotes were issued for this
second gourde, with the government issuing notes of 10 and 25 gourdes.
Third Gourde, 1872-
In 1872, the gourde was again revalued, this time at a rate
of three hundred to one. In the early years of this third gourde, only
banknotes were being issued and the name piastre was sometimes used instead of
gourde, especially on a banknote issue dated 1875. In 1881, the gourde was
linked to the French franc at 5 francs = 1 gourde and coin production
recommenced. The peg to the franc did not last but, in 1912, the gourde
was pegged to the US dollar at a value of 5 gourdes to the US dollar. Although
this peg was abandoned in 1989 and the currency now floats, because of the old
link, five gourdes is often referred to as a "Haitian dollar".
Likewise, 5 centimes is a "Haitian penny". Indeed, in many places,
prices are given not in gourdes, but rather in "Haitian dollars",
which must be multiplied by five to convert to gourdes.
The 1881 issue of coins consisted of denominations of 1, 2, 10, 20 and 50 centimes and 1 gourde.
5 centimes coins were added in 1889. Production of the 1 and 2 centimes and 1
gourde pieces ceased in the mid-1890s, whilst coin production ceased entirely
from 1908 until 1949, when 5 and 10 centimes coins were again minted. These
were followed by 20 centimes pieces in 1956, 50 centimes in 1972 and 1 and 5
gourdes in 1995.
10 centimes 1949
Coat of arms
Coins currently in
In 1875, banknotes were issued by the "National Bank of
Haiti" in denominations of 25 centimes, 1 and 5 piastres (equal to
gourdes). Following this, banknotes were issued in denominations ranging from
10 centimes to 5 gourdes by the various Haitian governments until 1916, when
the "National Bank of the Republic of Haiti" began issuing notes. In
1920, 1, 2, 5, 10 and 20 gourdes notes were issued, with 50 and 100 gourdes
added in 1925. In the 1970s, 25, 250 and 500 gourdes notes were introduced. In
1979, the Bank of the Republic of Haiti replaced the National Bank as the paper
money issuing body. A 1000 gourdes note was introduced in 1999, to commemorate
the 250th anniversary of the founding of Port-au-Prince. A 20 gourdes note was
released into circulation in 2001, both as a commemorative (to celebrate the
bicentennial of Constitution of Toussaint l'Ouverture) and as a regular issue.
In 2004, the Banque de la République d'Haïti issued a series of notes to
commemorate the bicentennial of Haiti.
in circulation are: