Mar 30, 2021
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Against counterfeits. Why did the Bank of Russia decide to give a new look to banknotes?

The Bank of Russia decided to give a new look to ruble banknotes. What will the money look like and what was the fault of the cities of Russia, which they decided to remove from the bills?

Against counterfeits

Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank Mikhail Alekseev announced the upcoming changes concerning each wallet. From 2022 to 2025, the Central Bank plans to modernize banknotes of six denominations: 10, 50, 100, 500, 1000 and 5000 rubles. The goal, according to the deputy chairman, is purely technical: “to tighten their protective complex and improve the design to the level realized in 200- and 2000-ruble bills.” And the modernized banknotes will appear gradually, according to the schedule (see infographics).

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Sketches of future money are still a secret. But it is known that the bills of 200 rubles, which appeared in 2017, were printed on special, more durable paper treated with a polymer composition. It is possible that a similar technology will be used for the production of modernized banknotes. This means that they will be slightly different than today, to the touch and visually.

“And the emblem of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation on the updated banknotes will most likely be replaced by the coat of arms of Russia,” suggests the creator of the site “” Yuri Gukasov… “This state symbol also first appeared on the new denominations, taken as a sample.”

Each district – one banknote

The pictorial series will undergo the greatest changes. As before, it will reflect the regional diversity of Russia, but a strict logic will appear in this. Each denomination will symbolize one of the federal districts. Therefore, on the front side of the banknotes, the capitals of the macroregions will be displayed, on the back side – their other attractions. And at the same time, cities that are not regional centers – Arkhangelsk, Krasnoyarsk, Khabarovsk and Yaroslavl – will leave the “face” of Russian money.

But is it all in time? Will the cash in the pockets of the people be increased by replacing the pictures that adorn cash? Is there any economic sense in the fact that Novosibirsk will replace Krasnoyarsk with 10 rubles of paper, which even today almost no one keeps in their wallets? And the centers of federal districts in Russia are changing. If suddenly a city loses the status of a regional capital, like Khabarovsk in 2018, will the Central Bank again redo the design of money?

“This whole reshuffling of cities is the PR of the Central Bank, diverting people’s attention away from more important problems, the depreciation of the ruble and rising inflation. But people, I’m afraid, will not appreciate the beauty of the bureaucratic undertaking, ”he doubts Director General of the Institute of Regional Problems Dmitry Zhuravlev… The only banknote, the face of which, perhaps, was worth changing – a five-hundred-ruble note with the image of a schooner standing on the embankment of Arkhangelsk. In 2016, this wooden ship burned down.

Try to distinguish

Old-style denznaks will go on a par with new ones for a long time. Most of them will disappear from circulation due to dilapidation only by 2035. But how convenient all this will be is a question. Indeed, even today, as shown by a survey conducted by one large bank, more than half of Russian citizens do not remember exactly which cities are depicted on banknotes of various denominations.

“If money of the same denomination turns out to be in circulation, but with a different design, people will confuse them, there will be discomfort,” Zhuravlev believes. “And the recognition of banknotes will not increase, since half of the population does not know which federal districts in our country and which cities are considered their capitals.”

“There are few symbols in the industrial centers that are familiar to the whole of Russia. Historical and natural monuments located in the hinterland can tell a lot more about the regions. They must be used in the design of banknotes, – Gukasov believes. – And to make it easier for people to distinguish money of the same denomination, it is important to preserve the color assigned to its old modifications. In the Russian Empire and the USSR, the color symbols of cash have not been interrupted for 150 years. “

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