FRANKFURT (AFP) – The European Central Bank said Thursday it plans to issue a new 50-euro banknote early next year, as it gradually replaces all of its different notes currently in use.
“The ECB and the national central banks of the euro area will unveil the new Europa series 50-euro banknote to the public on July 5. The new note is planned to be brought into circulation in spring 2017,” the central bank said in a statement.
All of the different denominations of the new banknotes contain a portrait of Europa, a figure from Greek mythology.
The ECB already replaced the five-euro note in May 2013, the 10-euro note in September 2014 and the 20-euro note in November 2015.
“The 50-euro banknote is the most widely used of all euro banknote denominations. More than eight billion banknotes in circulation are 50-euro banknotes, representing about 45 percent of the total,” the statement said.
The 100- and 200-euro banknotes will also eventually be replaced, but the ECB recently decided to withdraw the 500-euro banknote from circulation amid fears the bills are favoured by criminals for money laundering and even terrorist financing.
The ECB is in charge of issuing euro banknotes, while the national central banks of the 19 member countries are responsible for minting the euro coins.