ECCB polymer bank notes coming soon

Acting resident representative for the agency office of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) in Dominica, Ambrose Sylvester said new Eastern Caribbean (EC) polymer bank notes will begin circulation in Dominica and other member states of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) in June,2019.

“This new polymer bank notes will be in circulation as early as June this year commencing with the $50 denomination followed by the $100, the $20 and the $10 in August to September and the $5 in 2020,” Sylvester told DNO in an interview.

Sylvester said the polymer bank notes will eventually replace cotton-based, paper bank notes which are currently in circulation and the two sets of bank notes will co-circulate until the current ones are phased out and withdrawn from circulation over a period of approximately 5 years beginning in 2020 after the $5 notes would have been issued.

He explained, “And hear when I say these notes will co-circulate, it means that they will be in circulation side by side, so, if one goes to any business entity or even through the ATM, you may very well get a combination of both polymer notes and these paper bank notes together. The concept and size of the new bank notes will be retained as in the case of the current ones to ensure familiarity by the consuming public.”

Sylvester said the notes are expected to last about two and a half to three times the duration of the existing notes which will reduce the impact on the environment and make them more cost effective in the long run in terms of production and replacement.

The new polymer bank notes will include distinguishable and forward-looking security features, as well as greater durability which Sylvester said, will differentiate them from existing notes.

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  1. May 21, 2019

    Even with a life span of three times that of bank notes made from natural fibers, I cannot believe that polymer will have less impact on the environment.

    Many Far Eastern Countries use banana based paper for their bank notes.

    Gujarat-based Navsari Agriculture University has standardized a process of manufacturing high value paper from banana fiber, which it claims can be used to make currency notes that last for about a century. During research it was found that the paper made out of this fiber has shelf life of over 100 years and can be folded as many as 3,000 times.

    Two years ago I began making fine art paper from Dominica’s rich natural resources, banana stems being one such resource.

    • Sylvester Cadette
      May 21, 2019

      Mr. Burnett this is very interesting. as always, thanks for sharing. While I will follow this with my own research, I surely would like to know more of your personal experience with making paper from the banana stems.

      the whole aspect of making paper with banana stems seem to have been around for some time but I wonder why the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) has not explored this – or if they have, why not publish their findings on viability as an industry et cetera. Just wondering out loud.

      But Mr. Burnett, cognizant of your proprietary technology, I really would like to hear more of your Dominican experience wit making the fine art paper. Thanks

      • May 21, 2019

        Thanks for your interest Sylvester. When you are next in Dominica you are welcome to visit my studio and workshops at Antrim.

        In the meantime, go into the archives of my sculpture studio Dominica blog and look up posts for the following dates: 9th June 2017, 2nd July 2017, 27th July 2017, 22nd August 2017 and 1st June 2018. But I’ve come a long way since then. I’ll be happy to share with you the progress I have made -and the same goes for anyone else who may be interested.

        You’ll find a contact form on the side-bar of my blog.

  2. H
    May 21, 2019

    Even though they may last longer, are these polymer notes biodegradable though? Eventually they will have to be put out of circulation, so how will that then impact the environment. Just asking.

    • May 22, 2019

      I suppose they’ll be recycled? And since it’s not like people will be leaving dollar bills on the side of the road, they’ll be sure to get them all back.

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