The £20 and £50 paper notes in circulation in the UK will expire from next Friday (30). With a week to go before the deadline, the BoE (Bank of England) counts more than £11 billion (R$ 64 billion) of cash in circulation that will no longer be valid.
According to the institution, there are more than 250 million individual £20 notes and more than 110 million £50 notes that need to be replaced. After the deadline, ballots will no longer be accepted as payment throughout the UK.
The paper models will be exchanged for polymer banknotes, which are more resistant and difficult to forge. The expiry date was announced in September 2021, and the British had just over a year to make the switch.
According to the Bank of England, £20 banknotes depicting economist Adam Smith are being replaced by the figure of artist JMW Turner.
The £50 note is replaced by mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing, replacing Boulton and Watt founders Mattew Boulton and James Watt.
Also according to the institution, the polymer banknotes with a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II remain valid as currency.
In the United Kingdom, after the 30th of September, old banknotes can be exchanged by account holders at bank branches or by the British post office. The banking authority did not set a deadline for carrying out this procedure.
Brazilians also need to respect the deadline
According to Mario Battistel, exchange manager at Fair Corretora, Brazilians who keep pound notes also need to pay attention to the deadline so as not to run the risk of losing their values. He guides people who are in Brazil to look for financial institutions, such as brokers and commercial banks, for which they are account holders, in order to replace them.
“These banknotes will continue to be absorbed by the Bank of England for a longer period. But internally, the ideal is to rush to get rid of a paper that is worth nothing. It is advisable to sell these coins or exchange them for dollars or other notes that are not worth anything. are going out of circulation out there”.
Another option would be to look for exchange offices. There are several companies in the segment spread across the country. However, Battistel says the seven-day deadline makes the procedure more difficult. This is because, unlike commercial banks, exchange offices are prevented from importing foreign banknotes.
They would need to buy back the consumer notes and exchange them at a commercial bank, which would then export the paper to be replaced in the UK. “Therefore, I think that the period of seven days is too short for this more specific procedure. It is very likely that exchange houses will not accept it, but if it is not possible to go to commercial banks, it is worth a try”.
Be that as it may, the timing for the conversion must mean some loss. This Friday (23), the pound sterling fell to the lowest level since 1985, at US$ 1.10 (R$ 5.74), after the government announced budget plans that caused concern among investors.
Central Bank says companies are free to accept or not banknotes
According to the Brazilian BC (Central Bank), institutions authorized to operate in the foreign exchange market may accept or refuse banknotes offered during operations, since the exchange operation is considered a voluntary act.
“In this way, authorized institutions are not obliged to trade foreign currency in cash with their clients”, informed the BC, through the press office.
The exchange houses contacted by the report confirmed that they intend to maintain the purchase operations of the pound notes that are being replaced in the United Kingdom. SP Mundi Câmbio informed that it will maintain the operation until next Friday (30), when the banknotes no longer have value in the market. Until then, operations will follow the exchange rate.
At Travelex Confidence it is also possible to sell or exchange banknotes for another currency until next Friday. The sale price will follow the exchange rate variation of the day. After this period, the company will continue to receive out-of-circulation banknotes. In this case, a discount of 30% will be charged.
Grupo Rendimento’s Cotação exchange also confirmed that it will continue to buy pound notes, including £20 and £50, even after 30 September. “In the case of coins that will go out of circulation, the possibility of acquisition is due to the performance of an export operation of these currency notes to English banks”, said Alexandre Fialho, director of Grupo Rendimento.
According to the Bank of England, the £20 paper notes started to be withdrawn from circulation in February 2020, when the £20 polymer came into circulation.
Paper £50 notes started to be withdrawn in June 2021, also replaced by polymer notes.
The £20 and £50 banknotes complete the BoE’s first polymer series. According to the institution, the introduction of polymer banknotes allows for a new generation of security features that make them even more difficult to counterfeit.
The notes are also resistant to dirt and moisture, which allows them to last longer. In addition, they have tactile features that allow the visually impaired to use them more easily.