The CNB puts into circulation a new version of the CZK 500 banknote

On 1 April 2009, the Czech National Bank will put into circulation a new 2009 version of the CZK 500 banknote, which contains more protective elements compared with the older versions. The versions of the banknote of the same denomination which were put into circulation in 1995 and 1997 will remain legal tender.1

“By modifying the CZK 500 banknote, the CNB builds on innovative steps carried out in 2007 and 2008 in respect of the CZK 2000 and CZK 1000 banknotes. As these denominations, the new CZK 500 banknote has a number of updated and new protective elements, some visible to the naked eye and intended for the general public, and some detectable using machines and aids, intended for authentication by professional cash handlers. The new protective elements of the CZK 500, CZK 1000 and CZK 2000 banknotes are at the global cutting edge”, says Pavel Řežábek, Chief Executive Director and member of the Bank Board of the CNB.

The issuance of the 2009 version of the CZK 500 banknote is part of a long-term programme to improve the protection of Czech banknotes against counterfeiting. The 2009 version is the fourth version of the CZK 500 banknote based on a design by Oldřich Kulhánek.

“The programme to improve banknote protection responds on an ongoing basis to both innovations in reproduction techniques and innovations in protective elements, enabling genuine banknotes to be better distinguished from counterfeits. This increased user comfort will be surely appreciated by Czech citizens and tourists visiting the Czech Republic”, says Pavel Řežábek.

The improvement to the protection of the banknotes against counterfeiting takes two main forms. The first form includes the use of new protective elements which are accessible and visible without any aids and enable the general public to detect counterfeits more easily. In particular, they include a new type of protective slip, which is wider than before. The negative microtext indicating the nominal value is complemented with an abbreviation of the name of the Czech National Bank and is larger and more legible. The new protective slip is also characterised by its metallic colour, which changes from green to puce depending on the angle at which light falls on the banknote.

Against the light, a light “500” is visible next to the existing stepped watermark consisting of a portrait of Božena Němcová, accompanied by a small ornament in the form of three flowers.

A stylised flower of a four-petal rose printed in optically variable ink that changes colour from gold to green when tilted is located on the face side above the text “PĚT SE KORUN ČESKÝCH”. Previous versions do not feature this protective element.

Other protective elements are accessible to cash handling professionals equipped with UV lamps. The reaction of the special inks used to print the new version of the banknote to UV light is much richer than on the existing versions. Details on these elements are available in information leaflets describing the new banknotes issued by the Czech National Bank, and on the CNB website.

Other protective elements that can be authenticated only by machines at the Czech National Bank are also used on the banknotes. The Czech National Bank does not publish a description and features of these protective elements.

In issuing the new version of the CZK 500 banknote, the Czech National Bank not only fully meets its legal obligations in the management of smooth money circulation, but mainly enhances credibility of the Czech currency.



Pavlína Bolfová, CNB spokesperson

1The 1993 version has already ceased to be legal tender but is exchangeable in banks until 31 January 2010. It will be exchangeable at the Czech National Bank for a so far unlimited period from 1 February 2010.