New Canadian Plastic Bank Notes To Be Released in Nov./11, March /12 and the End of 2013


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The Bank of Canada is releasing new $100 bank notes in November, 2011 and $50 bank notes in March, 2012 and $20, $10 & $5 notes in late 2013.

The Bank of Canada is replacing the current $100, $50, $20, $10 and $5 paper notes with polymer (plastic) notes beginning in November, 2011 with the $100.00 bill, followed by the $50.00 bill in March 2012 and the others by the end of 2013.

The $20,$10 and $5.00 polymer notes will be unveiled and issued by the end of 2013.

The Bank of Canada has been issuing bank notes (made of flax and cotton based paper) since 1935 and periodically upgrades your notes by releasing a new series. These upgrades are made to stay ahead of counterfeiting and to improve the security of notes in circulation. The Bank is also responsible for ensuring that Canadians have access to bank notes that they can use with confidence.

Canadian money has evolved from the flax and cotton-based paper notes issued in 1935 to the new polymer (plastic) bills of today

The Bank has issued seven different series of bank notes and two commemorative bills. They feature the portraits of former Canadian prime ministers and members of the royal family on the front, and scenes that reflect Canadian culture, history, and achievements on the back.

See Canadian money evolve from the flax and cotton-based paper notes issued in 1935 to the new polymer bills of today. The cotton-paper substrate bank note has been considered to have a lifetime of 3 years, and the impact associated with manufacturing and end-of-life has been adjusted accordingly. The polymer-substrate bank note has been considered to have a lifetime of 7.5 years.

If you stacked all of the Canadian bank notes in circulation they’d reach a height of over 110 kilometres. That’s high enough to be in outer space!

  • Our Newest Series - Polymer

    Our Newest Series

    Learn all about the new polymer notes—the security, durability and innovation.

The plastic $100 note will be released in November, 2011 and the plastic $50 note will be released in March, 2012

How the Introduction of these Plastic Bank Notes may affect Businesses:

  • businesses will play a role in removing paper bank notes from circulation; this means that paper notes will be kept in the bottom of the till and the new plastic notes will be kept on top in the same compartment in the till
  • plastic notes and paper notes will be bundled separately and placed into the bank deposit
  • machines that count cash or accept cash payments (ie – automated teller machines (“ATM”) ) may need to be modified or retrofitted or replaced to efficiently handle the new polymer (plastic) bank notes


Polymer Series (2011)

Benefits For You

Polymer notes carry benefits that you’ll appreciate as you make those basic transactions of everyday life.

  • Secure:
    Their leading-edge security features are easy to verify and hard to counterfeit.
  • Durable:
    They last at least 2.5 times longer than paper notes, reducing processing and replacement costs and environmental impact.
  • Innovative:
    The detailed metallic imagery carried in a transparent area of the notes makes for one-of-a-kind currency.
  • Easy to Handle:
    The new notes feel different from paper notes, but are just as simple to use.

Currency Counterfeiting Statistics (2010)



Counterfeiting in Canada includes not only the manufacture of false bank notes, but also forged credit cards, traveller’s cheques, passports, and various identity documents.

Phoney identification has been used to obtain government assistance, personal loans, unemployment insurance benefits and to victimize governments, individuals and corporate bodies.

All financial loss, however, is traced back to the consumer who must pay higher prices as a result of counterfeiting. Technological advances in the printing process allow counterfeiters to improve their product and make law enforcement tasks more demanding.

Total Number of Counterfeit Canadian Banknotes Passed


* Seized Notes: Concluded Lab files ONLY

Total Number of Counterfeit Canadian Banknotes Seized


* Seized Notes: Concluded Lab files ONLY

Counterfeit Canadian Bank Notes Passed & Seized

Bank Note2007 Seized2007 Passed2008 Seized2008 Passed2009 Seized2009 Passed2010 Seized2010 Passed


Counterfeit Canadian Bank Notes Passed — By Denomination 2009/2010

Bank Note2009%2010%
Total $ Value$3,384,242$2,599,430


Counterfeit Canadian Bank Notes Passed & Seized
Activity by Province

ProvinceNumber seizedNumber passed%
British Columbia4,99719,70939%
Other *7062,4765%
*New Brunswick146*
*Nova Scotia45661*
*Northwest Territories1815*
*Prince Edward Island21016*
*Yukon Territories08*


Technology Used to Reproduce Canadian Bank Notes


Prepared by: RCMP National Anti-Counterfeiting Bureau (NACB)
Subject to review


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