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The European Central Bank has recorded a record number of fake euros since the introduction of the single European currency in 2002. This record significantly exceeded the achievements of Russian counterfeiters.
According to the ECB, in the period from January to June, about 413 thousand fake euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation. This is 17% more than in the second half of 2008, and one and a half times exceeds the “achievement” of the first half of 2007 (265 thousand banknotes). The indicator has been a record since the introduction of the single European currency in 2002, which today has circulation in 16 European countries. At the same time, almost all fake euros are in use in the eurozone.
The ECB spokesman turned out to comment on the reasons that led to the activation of counterfeiters. At the same time, not a single new center for the production of counterfeit bills has been identified over the past six months.
Most often in Europe, fake banknotes in denominations of 20 euros – this money makes up almost half of all the fakes seized. In second place in popularity with counterfeiters, banknotes of 50 euros are a third of all fakes. Banknotes denominated in 100 euros are faked even less often – 13.5% of the total amount of “almost real money”.
According to statistics from the ECB, a total of 12.5 billion “genuine” euro banknotes are circulating in the first half of 2009.