Local forex firm disinfecting banknotes

Local forex firm disinfecting banknotes

15-branch Super Rich Currency Exchange says staff and customer protection the priority

A man sprays disinfectant inside one of the 15 branches of Super Rich Currency Exchange Co in Bangkok on Friday. (Reuters Photo)
A man sprays disinfectant inside one of the 15 branches of Super Rich Currency Exchange Co in Bangkok on Friday. (Reuters Photo)

A local foreign-exchange firm is disinfecting the banknotes it collects from its branches as a safety precaution for its workers and customers because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Super Rich Currency Exchange Co has 15 branches at popular tourist areas in Bangkok.

“We have to ensure the safety for the staff, too. We have solutions to clean and protect our staff,” said chief executive Piya Tantivachyanon told Reuters.

“We will send the banknotes upstairs to steam with disinfectant and then seal them in plastic bags.”

Workers spray banknotes with disinfectant before sealing them in the plastic bags to be sent to other branches.

Other workers in protective suits were also seen spraying disinfectant at the Super Rich branch.

The head of the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases in Germany has said that handling banknotes does not pose a particular risk of contracting coronavirus.

But World Health Organization officials have advised people to wash their hands after handling banknotes.

The measures taken by Super Rich have been welcomed by its customers.

“I think that all banks and financial institutions or money exchangers should take whatever preventive action they can to minimise the risk for their customers so I think it’s a good idea,” customer Simon Morris said.

Last month, China ordered the disinfection of banknotes to contain the virus outbreak.

“It maybe could help kill germs by just 80% or 90%, but we still have to do it. It’s the best measure we have right now,” Piya said.

Bank of Ayudhya on Friday said it would temporarily suspend currency exchange service at its branches and booths until the virus situation improves.

Bank employees working at foreign-exchange booths were instructed to self-quarantine at home for 14 days.

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