Issuing Banknotes and Coins

The Committee for the Planning of Banknotes, Coins and Commemorative Coins advises the Governor on motifs to be featured on banknotes. Since 1969 the Committee has generally recommended that banknotes carry portraits of Israel's deceased presidents, prime ministers and other personalities who left their imprint on Israel and the Jewish people. The banknotes also give expression to subjects related to the activities of these people.

The Birth of a Banknote


The process of issuing a banknote starts with the selection of the motif, after which a competition between designers is held. The design chosen by the Committee as the most suitable is presented to the Governor for his approval. After the Governor approves the design of the banknote and the other legally required approvals have been obtained, the process of preparation for printing starts.


In the design stage, anti-counterfeit security features such as watermarks, metal security threads, color-changing, etc. are selected.​



Based on the design chosen for the banknote, the printing house prepares the printing plates. At the same time the paper on which the notes will be printed is prepared. The paper most commonly used around the world is that manufactured from at least 90% cotton.



The printing process consists of several stages, and at the end of each stage checks are performed on the sharpness of the color, the amount of ink, the accuracy of the positioning of the different elements, the inclusion of the security features, etc. The notes are printed on large sheets, each of which contains a number of banknotes. The entire process is strictly monitored by the Bank of Israel's Currency Department.​



The banknotes are then cut from the sheets and packed into bundles. The Bank releases the banknotes into circulation via the banks.

The banks deposit in the Bank of Israel banknotes unfit for use which they receive from the public.  The Bank of Israel counts and sorts them: worn or soiled banknotes are shredded, and counterfeits are sent to the police.​


The Birth of a Coin

Israel's coins usually carry designs based on those that appeared on ancient Jewish coins.

The Committee for the Planning of Banknotes, Coins and Commemorative Coins selects the motif, decides on the size of the coin and the metal to be used, and chooses a designer, via a competition, to design the coin in the spirit of the ancient motif decided upon.

The year of issue and the emblem of the State appear on all coins of Israel. The design carries captions in Hebrew, English and Arabic.


After the Governor approves the design, and after the other legally required approvals have been obtained, the minting process starts.​



The graphic design of the coin is transferred to the mint, selected by tender, which then produces the dies. These will be used for striking the previously ordered blanks, ordered according to a specification regarding the type of alloy, the diameter and thickness of the blank, and its metallurgical properties.​


The mint first carries out a trial run of production. When this has been approved, the quantity of coins ordered is minted.

Coins are minted to be counterfeit-proof and recognizable by all automatic vending and other machines. As with the printing of banknotes, the minting process takes place under strict scrutiny. ​



The Bank releases the coins into circulation via the banks. Damaged coins received by the banks from the public are withdrawn from circulation, and transferred to the Bank of Israel for melting. Counterfeit coins are sent to the police.