PRESS RELEASE

Euro banknotes to be produced until 31 December 2001

5 October 2001

Frankfurt am Main, 5 October 2001

The Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) has decided to increase the total amount of euro banknotes needed before 1 January 2002 from 14.25 billion banknotes to around 14.89 billion banknotes – see attached table. This decision reflects the frontloading orders of the banks in several countries which indicate, in particular for the low value denomination banknotes, a higher than expected demand. Therefore the national central banks of the euro area (NCBs) have reassessed the number of euro banknotes required before 1 January 2002 in order to accommodate these needs.

In 11 of the 12 euro area countries it is envisaged to dispense one or both of the low denomination euro banknotes (i.e. EUR 5 and EUR 10) via at least part of the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) network at the start of 2002. In countries where welfare payments are paid largely in cash, this will also be done in low denominations. Moreover, to some extent banks are prepared to pay out low denomination euro banknotes over the counter.

The ECB and the NCBs deem it of specific importance to put, in particular, the low denomination euro banknotes (i.e. EUR 5 and EUR 10) into circulation on a large scale at the beginning of 2002. This will alleviate retailer's concerns regarding the need to hold large amounts of cash during the first few days of 2002 and thus contribute to a smooth cash changeover.

Euro banknotes to be produced until 31 December 2001 (in millions of notes)

Country 1 €5 €10 €20 €50 €100 €200 €500 Total from €5 to €500
Belgium 125.0 110.0 140.0 100.0 50.0 10.0 15.0 550.0
Germany 1,158.7 1,027.2 771.9 1144.0 362.9 99.6 218.6 4,782.9
Greece 158.0 183.0 178.0 67.0 26.0 4.0 1.0 617.0
Spain 308.9 281.5 547.2 655.0 103.3 12.8 15.4 1,924.1
France 350.0 625.0 710.0 360.0 150.0 20.0 50.0 2,265.0
Ireland 60.0 45.0 130.0 50.0 8.3 0.2 0.2 293.7
Italy 540.5 516.0 441.2 525.0 361.0 32.0 24.0 2,439.7
Luxembourg 6.0 3.0 13.0 11.0 3.0 2.0 8.0 46.0
Netherlands 135.0 130.0 105.0 223.0 35.0 15.0 16.0 659.0
Austria 150.0 150.0 45.0 60.0 105.0 20.0 20.0 550.0
Portugal 123.0 90.0 259.0 58.0 6.0 1.0 0.5 537.5
Finland 40.0 60.0 66.0 30.0 20.0 7.0 2.0 225.0
TOTAL EU-12 3,155.1 3,220.7 3,406.3 3,283.0 1,230.5 223.6 370.7 14,889.9

1 Stored in several locations

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