Tuesday, August 11, 2015

How China's renminbi banknote has changed over the decades

As it emerges that the People’s Bank of China is planning to issue a new 100 yuan banknote with improved anti-counterfeiting features in November, the first upgrade of the bill since 2005, we look at the many forms the note has taken over the years.

FIRST SET

Issued on 1 December, 1948

12 denominations (1 yuan, 5 yuan, 10 yuan, 20 yuan, 50 yuan, 100 yuan, 200 yuan, 500 yuan, 1,000 yuan, 5,000 yuan, 10,000 yuan, 50,000 yuan)

Currency issued on the day the central bank, the People’s Bank of China, was established

The paper bills were easily damaged, and the large denominations made it hard for people to handle

There was little to no anti-counterfeit technology

SECOND SET

Issued on 1 March, 1955

11 denominations (1 cent, 2 cents, 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 yuan, 20 yuan, 3 yuan, 5 yuan, 10 yuan)

Coins issued for the first time (1-, 2- and 5-cent coins)

Better security printing techniques developed, including printing watermarks on the bills, making them harder to forge

THIRD SET

Issued on 20 April, 1962

10 denominations (1 cent, 2 cents, 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 yuan, 20 yuan, 5 yuan, 10 yuan)

More coins issued in 1980 (10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 yuan)

Banknote designs reflected industrialisation and agriculture boom

Bills also featured English and Arabic so foreigners could differentiate their values

FOURTH SET

Issued on 25 April, 1987

Nine denominations (10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 yuan, 2 yuan, 5 yuan, 10 yuan, 50 yuan, 100 yuan)

Banknote designs China’s four revolutionaries: Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai, Liu Shaoqi and Zhu De

Anti-counterfeit technology improved with more embossing and textures

Bills also featured braille to held the visually impaired; China was one of the first nations to do so

FIFTH SET, FIRST EDITION

Issued on 1 October, 1999

Eight denominations (10 cents, 50 cents, 1 yuan, 5 yuan, 10 yuan, 20 yuan, 50 yuan, 100 yuan)

Bills featuring founding father Mao Zedong issued to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China

Banknotes printed with security threads woven down the centre of the bill

Microprinting used so certain text was not discernible to the naked eye

Gravure printing technique used, meaning some patterns were slightly uneven or concave to the touch

FIFTH SET, SECOND EDITION

Issued on 31 August, 2005

Holographic, miniature “100”s printed on the security threads, visible using magnetic detection equipment

Denomination figures printed in ink visible only when tilted or viewed under direct light

Serial numbers printed in two different colours, with the last four digits decreasing in size

FIFTH SET, THIRD EDITION

To be issued on 12 November, 2015

Colour-changing ink will be applied to the pattern of the number 100 in the centre of the bill; the colour will change from golden to green when viewed at different angles

One additional serial number on the right of the bill to ensure genuine notes can still be identified when the first serial number has worn off

New security line on the right of the bill will change from pink to green when viewed at different angles

Pattern of the Great Hall of the People will be printed in an uneven texture

 

 

Courtesy Naomi Ng, South China Morning Post, August 11, 2015

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