Paper Money

Central Bank of Russia adding varnish to 100-ruble notes

The Central Bank of Russia is adding a coat of varnish to 100-ruble notes in an effort protect the notes from routine wear and tear.

Original images courtesy of Central Bank of Russia.

The Central Bank of Russia has a new idea for preserving and extending the life of its bank notes — coating them with varnish

The bank has recently started printing 100-ruble notes (each the equivalent of $1.58) with a varnished coating that the bank says will protect them better from wear and tear in daily use and will keep them from soiling as easily as they currently do. As a consequence, it will reduce costs by not having to print replacements as often.

Bank officials revealed that it has been running tests with different types of varnishes on trial batches of bills since 2016. The test bank notes were tracked by their serial numbers to get circulation statistics. Then, equipment was used to rate their durability and determined the varnish that provided the best results.

Vladimir Demidenko, deputy director of the Cash Department, said, “The savings due to increased longevity of varnished banknotes are much more worthy than this technological operation costs.” He added that the bank is planning to varnish a third of the 100-ruble notes in circulation, and that the 50-ruble notes will also undergo varnishing soon. 

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