"Enterprises working with cash, in preparation for the issue of the new banknotes into circulation, must do their homework already now, while the population, as the date of the banknotes' issue approaches, will be introduced to the updated design and new security features of the banknote. It is important to note that, once the new banknote is issued, the old ones will also be valid, thus people will really not need to go anywhere for currency exchange," says Marius Jurgilas, member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania, at a seminar dedicated to help banknote equipment suppliers, banks, distribution businesses and service enterprises, as well as other related parties to prepare for the issuance of the new banknote into circulation.
According to Jurgilas, if enterprises use banknote acceptance and checking equipment, they must take care of the equipment's updating and preparation for the new 20 euro banknote. It is also important for enterprises to inform and train their employees.
The 20 euro banknote will already be the third banknote from the new series Europa. The new 5 euro banknotes were issued into circulation in May 2013, while the new 10 euro banknotes - in September 2014. The issuance of the Europa series started with the aim of updating and enhancing security features to make banknote counterfeiting even more difficult.
The Bank of Lithuania, just as other euro area national central banks, provides legal entities that distribute or use banknote checking and handling equipment with a possibility to borrow uncirculated 20 euro banknotes for testing. They can borrow up to 1,400 pieces of banknotes; their return is ensured against 20 euro collateral for each banknote. An enterprise must sign an agreement with the Bank of Lithuania and ensure proper storage of the banknotes.
The Bank of Lithuania, as needed, will arrange training to cash handlers, to introduce them to the new 20 euro banknote and its security features. The information material of the European Central Bank's partnership programme will also help enterprises introduce their employees and customers to the banknote from the new series.
The 20 euro banknote is the second most popular banknote (the most popular one is the 50 euro) in Lithuania, in terms of the Bank of Lithuania's net national issue. The banknotes of this denomination are issued by ATMs; traders and service providers check them for authenticity with special machines.
The new series of banknotes has been named Europa because in the security features of the banknotes from this series (watermark, hologram) a portrait of Europa, a figure from Greek mythology, for whom the continent Europe was named, is used. The new 20 euro banknote has an innovative security feature - a portrait window in the hologram. When the banknote is held up to the light, the window becomes transparent and a portrait of Europe becomes visible both on the obverse and reverse of the banknote.
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