Counterfeit money in Asia is not just a fantasy fictionalized by that Jackie Chan
atrocity film Rush Hour 2. It is a real situation. Very real.. and usually very problematic. One reason why you won’t find denominations over 100RMB here: the government hasn’t found a way to make sure it’ll infiltrate the population without getting counterfeited up the wazoo.
And now the problem has hit primary students. For an elementary school in Shanxi, counterfeit money issued from “China Children’s Toy Bank” provide an alternative to using real money for such wholesome after-school activities such as “playing dice or poker”.
As if this under-age foray into the world of gambling wasn’t bad enough, it is actually illegal to create these faux-notes unless the creators have the consent of the People’s Bank of China. No word so far about any governmental or educational measures about getting rid of these notes.
However, these ‘shanzhai’ RMB are just too smacktastically adorable to be banned. Just look at all the cute little cartoon characters emblazoned on the money! Conspicuously absent are default ‘toon staples like Doraemon, Hello Kitty, and Pleasant Goat. Perhaps they’ll make their appearance on the next batch of fake notes.
[Photo from BBS 163]