Brazil’s new bank notes of 50 and 100 reais, presented this Wednesday to the press by the Central Bank president Henrique Meirelles and Finance Minister Guido Mantega, will come into circulation in the first half of this year. The notes of lesser value – from 2, 5, 10 and 20 reais will be replaced gradually until 2012.
The motto of the campaign to launch the money “The Real Has Gotten Even Stronger.”
The new bill will meet the demands of the visually impaired with different sizes and notches in order to be more easily identified by touch.
They will also count on more sophisticated graphics making it harder to counterfeit them. Elements that already existed, such as watermark, were maintained while other features have been redesigned for easier identification.
“The aim is that these notes will be more secure and will be able to circulate with security and make fakes more difficult. We are issuing last-generation notes compatible with the most modern in circulation in the world, such as the Euro and the new US dollar,” Mantega said.
“We have to be prepared for the real to become a money in international flows. There is already a demand for it to be used outside the country. That’s why fake-proof paper money is needed,” he added.
“People do not need to go to the bank to exchange notes. They [the current and the new] will coexist [until they are all recalled],” informed Meirelles.
In the notes of 50 and 100 reais, which will be in circulation before June, were included different holographic stripes. According to the Central Bank, this is one of the most sophisticated anti-counterfeiting measures.
The replacement of the currency will be made gradually. The notes of 10 and 20 reais should appear in the first half of 2011. All new notes should be in circulation by the end of 2012.
The adaptation of banking equipment to read the new notes should be quick and will not result in problems for the institutions, assures the Brazilian monetary authority.
The administration director of the Banco Central, Anthero Meirelles, says it will only be necessary to change the cassette boxes of the ATMs to adapt them to the new dimensions.
The president of Brazil’s Mint, Luiz Felipe Denucci, told reporters that the Banco Central will start receiving its new money in April:
“We invested 400 million reais (US$ 216 million) in the effort to modernize the Mint,” said Denucci.
The cost to manufacture one thousand of the new currency will be close to 200 reais (US$ 108), about 25% more than what was paid to make the previous notes. On the other hand, the technicians say, the new money should last 30% more than the old one
The losses suffered by Brazil with fake money reached 23 million reais (US$ 12.4 million) in 2009. In 2008 it was worse: 28 million reais (US$ 15.1 million).
“There are about 143 fake notes among each million in circulation. Before, they used to be 200 per million,” said Anthero Meirelles.
Brazil has 4.2 billion notes circulating right now, amounting to 115 billion reais (US$ 62.1).