New 50 Euro banknote, the fourth in the “Europa series’’ issued by the European Central Bank began circulating on Tuesday.

The 50 Euro is the most widely used euro note denomination which accounts for 46 per cent of all euro banknotes, with more than nine billion of them in circulation.

ECB President Mario Draghi said at the official launch that cash was essential to any economy even in this digital age.

“Over three-quarters of all payments at points-of-sale in the euro area are made in cash. In terms of transaction values, that’s slightly over half.

“Holding a euro banknote and knowing that it can be used in 19 countries is a reminder of the deep integration Europe has attained,” the ECB president said.

According to Draghi, support for the single currency now has been comparable to the highs recorded in the pre-crisis period, in spite of the difficulties in recent years.

The ECB planned to issue new 100 and 200 euro banknotes by the end of 2018, whereas the new series would not include 500 euro banknote in view of concerns that the note could facilitate illicit activities.

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