Euro banknotes are seen in Brussels, Belgium. Photo by Xinhua / Zheng Huansong.
The European Central Bank (ECB) has said it will start redesigning euro banknotes, as cash remains an important form of payment for euro area consumers, according to reports by Xinhua News Agency.
The ECB has appointed an advisory group to submit a list of new topics to the ECB’s Governing Council, based on opinions from euro area citizens, the central bank said in a press release.
The ECB plans to select new models of euro banknotes by 2024.
“Euro banknotes are here to stay. They are a tangible and visible symbol of our solidarity in Europe, especially in times of crisis, and there is always a strong demand for them.“, – said ECB President Christine Lagarde.
“After 20 years, it is time to review the appearance of our banknotes to make them more accessible to Europeans of all ages and from all backgrounds”, – she said.
A study published by the ECB in December of last year showed that consumers mainly used cash for POS and P2P payments. The volume of POS and P2P transactions carried out in cash accounted for 73% of the total.
More than half of the respondents to a survey for the study felt that it was important for them to be able to pay in cash in the future.
A pedestrian wearing a face mask walks past a Euro sculpture in Frankfurt, Germany. Photo by Xinhua / Lu Yang.
The study was carried out in 2019 to find out the payment attitudes of consumers in the euro area.
Despite the increase in cashless payments during the pandemic, demand for cash has increased due to the crucial role of cash as a store of value, according to the ECB.
Meanwhile, the central bank is studying what a digital euro might look like. The ECB announced in July that it would launch a digital euro project to assess the possibility of issuing a digital euro. Initiated in October, the investigation is expected to last about two years.
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