This BBC News article discusses the Bank of England's announcement that beginning in 2016, it will issue polymer banknotes.
Smaller, wipe-clean plastic banknotes could be introduced by the Bank of England from 2016, matching some currencies across the world.
The new polymer notes stay cleaner, are more secure and should even survive a spell in the washing machine, the Bank says.
It has spent three years studying the impacts of a change from cotton paper.
The switch could start with the new £5 note, featuring Sir Winston Churchill, with the £10 note to follow.
The Bank has organised a roadshow to gauge public opinion across the UK over the next two months before coming to a final decision in December.
Polymer banknotes are produced from a thin, transparent and flexible film made of polypropylene.
This is coated with multiple layers of special ink (usually white) to the front and the back.
A portion of the film is typically left clear to form a window or clear portion in the design, to be used for protection against counterfeits.
Other security features can be embedded in, or laid onto, the banknote.
Once the film has been cut into sheets, they can be printed using standard banknote printing equipment.
The prospect of plastic banknotes has been on the agenda for some time.
If it goes ahead it would not be the first time that polymer notes had been seen in the UK.
In 1999 Northern Bank of Northern Ireland issued a polymer £5 commemorative note celebrating the year 2000.
With the venerable Bank of England going polymer, can the U.S. be far behind? You can bet the Crane paper company will fight the switch tooth and nail.
To read the complete article, see:
Plastic banknotes ready for 2016, says Bank of England
Wayne Homren, Editor
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