Swiss CHF50 named ‘Bank Note of the Year’

The CHF50 note's three-layer structure makes it more durable than traditional banknote paper Keystone

In a paper-thin victory, Switzerland has beaten off competition from the Maldives, Argentina and Scotland to win “Bank Note of the Year” for 2016.,

Nominees for the award, conferred by the International Bank Note Society (IBNS), “must have artistic merit and/or innovative security features”.

The winning CHF50 ($50.25) note has 15 security features to thwart counterfeiters, including shimmery ink, glittery thread, window cut-outs, ultraviolet elements and microtext.

In addition, it has a three-layer structure which consists of two outer layers of cotton paper and a polymer core for reinforcement, making it more durable than traditional banknote paper.

“Incorporating the latest technological security standards, future notes will depict time, light, water, matter and language. Using three layer substrate Durasafe® technology, the bright green vertical banknote depicts dandelion seeds, a paraglider aloft in the mountains and a strikingly playful human hand,” the IBNS said on its website.

The CHF50 note, which went into circulation on April 12, 2016, is the third polymer note in a row to win the award. 

Previous winners include New Zealand’s five-dollar note (2015), Trinidad & Tobago’s 50-dollar note (2014) and Kazakhstan’s 1,000-tenge note (2013).

The new CHF50 note was the first of the ninth series of banknotes to go into circulation; the previous series was released 20 years ago. The next in the series, the new CHF20 note, will be presented in Bern on May 10 and enter circulation a week later.

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