The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) says the new EC$5 polymer banknotes are now in St Kitts and Nevis.

The ECCB says it was issued to CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank (Barbados) Ltd, Republic Bank (EC) Limited, Royal Bank of Canada, and the St Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank.

The new note will be issued to other banks operating in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union on a needs basis.

The ECCB launched its family of polymer notes in May 2019, with the new $50 note which features former Governor of the ECCB, the late Sir K Dwight Venner. The $100, $20 and $10 were issued subsequently based on stock levels at the commercial banks in the ECCB member countries.

The EC polymer notes are made from a thin, flexible and transparent plastic film. The notes are cleaner as they are more resistant to dirt and moisture; more secure as they are more difficult to counterfeit because polymer allows for the inclusion of advanced security features.

The notes are also stronger because they are much more durable than paper and are difficult to tear.

The EC polymer and paper notes are co-circulating. Therefore, in conducting business, persons may receive both the EC polymer and paper banknotes.