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"Your opinion is important to us." Unfortunately, you cannot express it.

"Your opinion is important to us." Unfortunately, you cannot express it. The participatory process that will lead the European Central Bank to choose the visual design of the next series of euro banknotes, expected to be circulated after 2026, begins with a setback. Until August 31 of this year, European citizens can contribute to the targeted survey to identify one of the seven proposed macro-themes:

1) Birds;

2) European culture;

3) European values reflected in nature;

4) The future is yours;

5) Hands;

6) Our Europe,


7) Rivers: the lifeblood of Europe.

However, on the launch day of the initiative - July 10th - the web section dedicated to the survey was inaccessible for several hours, stating "The site is down for maintenance."

Nevertheless, ECB President Christine Lagarde, urging users to respond to the survey, stated, "There is a strong link between our single currency and our common European identity, and our new series of banknotes should highlight that. We want Europeans to identify with the visual design of the euro banknotes, and that is why they will have an active role in selecting the new theme." Fabio Panetta, current member of the Executive Board and future Governor of the Bank of Italy, also commented, "We are working on a new series of high-tech banknotes to hinder counterfeiting and reduce environmental impact. We are committed to preserving cash and ensuring that public money always represents a payment option."

The final theme for the next generation of banknotes should be chosen by the ECB by 2024. Afterward, a competition will be launched for the actual designs to be printed on the banknotes. On that occasion, citizens will be called upon once again to give their preference among the selected options. The first euro banknotes entered circulation on January 1, 2002. "After 20 years, it is time to renew the appearance of our banknotes so that European citizens of all ages and backgrounds can identify with them," concluded Lagarde.

In a statement appearing on the Bank of Italy's website, the motivations for printing new banknotes are summarized as follows: "The ECB and the national central banks of euro area countries are committed to ensuring that euro banknotes remain an innovative, secure, and efficient means of payment. In a world where reproduction technologies are rapidly evolving and counterfeiters have easy access to information and materials, it is necessary to periodically issue new banknotes. In addition to security, the ECB is committed to reducing the environmental impact of euro banknotes throughout their lifecycle, making them closer to and inclusive of people, accessible to European citizens of all ages and backgrounds, including vulnerable groups such as people with visual impairments."

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