THE EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK has unveiled images of a new €5 note is to be introduced into circulation from May 2 of this year.
The new note is the first in a series of an initiative to replace all seven denominations of euro notes, introducing new security features.
The new notes will feature the likeness of the Greek mythological figure of Europa, whose face will appear on one of the note’s new holograms.
The image of Europa – who was seduced and abducted by Zeus in the guise of a bull – is derived from a vase housed in the Musée du Louvre in Paris which was present at today’s launch in Frankfurt.
The new notes includes Europa’s image in their watermark and on its hologramic strip, and will also feature an emerald-coloured ’5′ in its corner which changes colour from green to blue when tilted under light.
The notes also feature a wider map of Europe – to reflect the wider geographical spread of the EU since the first banknotes were released at the Euro’s launch in 2002 – and features the word ‘Euro’ in the Cyrillic script as well as the Latin and Greek alphabets.
Almost €913 billion in euro banknotes were in circulation at the end of 2012, a quarter of which was in circulation outside the 17 eurozone nations.
Further notes in the ‘Europa series’ – which Mario Draghi described as “smarter” than the current series of banknotes – will be rolled out in the coming years.
Existing €5 notes will retain their value indefinitely, with the ECB promising to announce in due course when they will stop being accepted as legal tender.
Once invalid, older notes will be available to exchange at any national Central Bank.