The first issue of banknotes in 1993


In accordance with the Litas Committee decision of 14 June 1993, litas and its subunit centas were issued into circulation on 25 June: 10, 20, 50 and 100 litas banknotes, 1, 2 and 5 litas coins and 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent coins. The value of 1 litas was set at 100 talonas that was then used as temporary money.

The first issue of litas was printed as early as in 1991 at the US-based firm US Banknote Corporation (USBC) and was released into circulation in 1993. However, this issue’s banknotes were quite primitive and had only eight security features (to compare, the banknotes of 2007 issue had more than twenty of them). Due to this issue, they were soon started to be replaced by banknotes issued in 1993.
An interesting fact is that in 1991, banknotes of 500 and 1,000 litas denominations were also issued. However, usually banks have a rule that the banknote of the highest denomination should amount to half of the average wage, therefore there was no need to issue banknotes of these denominations and they were not re-released in 1993.

We invite you to take a look at the first litas banknotes printed 24 years ago. Their original samples can be viewed at the Bank of Lithuania’s Money Museum!

Last updated: 2021-06-19