Right from the 16th century, the importance of European countries in international trade and commerce has never declined. Well, of course, they did face a setback when the United States of America emerged in the twentieth century. However, that did not completely take away the position and reputation of European economies.
Euro is the common currency of many European countries, and thus knowing about it a little will certainly prove to be beneficial. In fact, even the 0 Euro banknotes, which are issued as souvenirs by many European countries have its own importance. So, let’s check out some amazing facts about Euro.
Interesting facts about Euro
- Discussions about issuing a common currency for all European countries were in the air since the 70’s. However, the major step was finally taken in 1992 Treaty of Maastricht. Rules and regulations to be followed by the member countries were laid down.
- On 1st January 1999, the Euro was introduced as an electronic payment method. Then on 1st January 2002, the Euro notes came into circulation. The first 12 countries which adopted Euro as currency were – Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, Austria, Finland, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, France, Ireland, and The Netherlands. Later, other countries like Cyprus, Estonia, Slovakia, Malta, Slovenia, Lithuania, and Latvia joined in the club of Euro using countries.
- One Euro was divided into 100 cents. The symbol used for Euro is € (two parallel sleeping lines crossing at the center of the alphabet). It derived from a Greek alphabet known as ‘epsilon’.
- Currency was issued in coins of 1 cent, 2 cents, 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, €1, and €2. The back side of the Euro coin is exactly same throughout the Eurozone. It has denomination of the coin and Europe map on the back side. However, on the front side, the country issuing the coin inscribed different symbols as per their personal choice. Nevertheless, in spite of this difference of the front side, it is accepted and recognized throughout the Eurozone.
- Low values coins are made using Nordic Gold, an alloy specially generated for the construction of coins.
- Unlike Euro coins, the euro banknotes have one common design for every denomination on both front and back side. Picture of a particular European building is printed on the back side of different denomination notes. Denominations are written in 3 different languages – Roman, Greek and Cyrillic. Different denomination notes come in different colors. €500 is printed in purple, €200 comes in yellow, €100 is in green, €50 in orange, €20 is in blue, €10 comes in red, and €5 is printed in grey. Some higher denomination banknotes are not issued in certain countries, but if you are carrying them, they are recognized and accepted.
- Euro currency is managed by the European System of Central Banks (ESCB). The ESCB comprises of European Central Bank and the Eurozone central banks. The European Central Bank which is headquartered in Frankfurt, Germany, sets the monetary policy and other members of ESCB takes the responsibility of printing, minting and distributing Euro coins and notes.
Lastly, it is important to remember that Euro is highly valued around the globe, and no other currency except US dollar, beats the position of Euro in international trade.