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, Extrusion, Film & Sheet

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

Huhtamäki selling film division

November 26, 2014 2:10 pm ET

Private equity firm Deutsche Beteiligungs AG (DBAG) will acquire the film business of Finland-based plastics packaging group Huhtamäki Oyj for 141...    More

Image

SPI hopes to build on EPS recycling

November 26, 2014 6:00 am ET

Successfully recycling expanded polystyrene can be a challenge, there's no doubt about that. EPS, however, has value, is in demand and deserves to be ...    More

Image

Irish packaging group Smurfit Kappa opens film plant in Spain

November 26, 2014 6:00 am ET

Global packaging group Smurfit Kappa Group plc has responded to growing demand for its bag-in-box liquid container/dispensers by opening a new plant...    More

Image

Deal adds U.K. plant to DelStar

November 25, 2014 12:47 pm ET

Schweitzer-Mauduit International Inc. (SWM) is acquiring certain assets from the advanced wound management division of London-based Smith & Nephew...    More

Image

Indian plastics group targets waste

November 24, 2014 12:46 pm ET

An Indian plastics environmental group and the country's largest brand for packaged water, Bisleri International Pvt. Ltd., have launched a trial prog...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Brazil - State of the Industry Report

This in-depth report examines the Brazilian plastics industry from a historical and geographical context. Our analysts provide insight on economic trends and forecasts, growing manufacturing sectors that utilize plastics, private investment opportunities, market environment challenges, and innovations in R&D.

Data tables and charts on producer prices, trade, plastics production and end market indicators is also included.

Learn more

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

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

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

October 27, 2015 - October 29, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - New York - 2015

More Events