Bank of England mulls printing plastic banknotes

PLASTICS & RUBBER WEEKLY

Published: September 11, 2013 1:58 pm ET
Updated: September 11, 2013 1:59 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, Film & Sheet, Extrusion

The Bank of England has launched a public consultation to find out whether people would be ready to accept plastic banknotes.

If it gets the go-ahead the Bank will introduce polymer notes one at a time, starting with the new-style £5 note, featuring Winston Churchill, in 2016 "at the earliest". This would be followed with a new £10 note.

The Bank said after three years' of research it was confident that printing banknotes on polymer "would bring considerable benefits to both the durability and quality" of the cash in people's wallets.

Compared with cotton printed notes the Bank said polymer banknotes would stay cleaner for longer, they would possess advanced security features making them harder to counterfeit and they would be more durable, lasting at least 2.5 times longer than existing paper notes.

And having spoken to what it called "key stakeholders" including retailers, financial institutions and the cash industry the Bank said it was encouraged by what called a positive initial reaction.

But the Bank said it wanted to consult the public, an exercise that will remain open until Nov. 15. The Bank said it will announce its decision in December.

Some observers have expressed concerns that plastic notes would be difficult to fold and may not work well in existing cash point machines.

However Charles Bean, deputy governor of the Bank of England, said it would only print plastic notes if it "was persuaded that the public would continue to have confidence in, and be comfortable with, our notes."

The Bank added that if it did move to polymer it would introduce smaller notes in future, since "these will be more in line with the size of those in other countries and the larger denomination banknotes will be easier to fit into purses and wallets."

The recently appointed governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, brought in polymer bank notes in his previous role as head of Canada's national bank, while Australia also has polymer notes in circulation.

Peter Davis, director-general of the British Plastics Federation, said he welcomed the move.

"We are sure the British public will like the plastic notes. After all we are already used to saying 'get out the plastic' when making a purchase.

"It's astonishing that a current fiver only lasts a year. Plastic notes, already used by Canada, are infinitely more durable and can take more sophisticated security features."

Davis said it was "essential" that any plastic banknotes were made in the UK and called for making all coins in plastics: "It will save wear and tear on our pockets."


Comments

Bank of England mulls printing plastic banknotes

PLASTICS & RUBBER WEEKLY

Published: September 11, 2013 1:58 pm ET
Updated: September 11, 2013 1:59 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Report: SVP takes Klöckner Pentaplast off the market

October 21, 2014 4:19 pm ET

Plastic sheet leader Klöckner Pentaplast Group is no longer for sale, according to an Oct. 21 Reuters article.    More

Image

Wisconsin cast film maker buys Ohio blown film specialist

October 21, 2014 2:57 pm ET

A Midwest U.S. acquisition has created a company armed with two distinct film technologies: cast films and coextruded blown film constructions.    More

Image

Plastic particles showing up in Germany's Lake Constance

October 21, 2014 1:16 pm ET

While Fakuma 2014 exhibitors and visitors occupied themselves with topics like molding of micro-sized plastic parts during the show, the presence of...    More

Image

Report: Suspected former Nazi with plastic connection collecting Social Security

October 20, 2014 3:52 pm ET

AKRON, OHIO — A one-time plastics executive in Akron is among dozens of suspected former Nazis who have been collecting U.S. Social Security...    More

Image

Atkore expands in PVC conduit, buying American Pipe & Plastics

October 20, 2014 6:06 pm ET

Atkore International Inc. of Harvey, Ill., has acquired PVC conduit maker American Pipe & Plastics Inc. of Kirkwood, N.Y., which serves the telecommun...    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 million dollar plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our analysts provide insight on business trends, foreign investment, top end markets and plastics processing activity. The report also provides important data on exports, production, employment and value of plastics products manufactured.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events