The Ministry of Finance, the Bank of Japan, and the National Printing Bureau are making efforts to make banknotes easier to use for people who are visually impaired.
We are working on future design changes to banknotes (timing of the design changes is yet to be determined) to enhance the ease with which people who are visually impaired can tell the difference between banknotes. We continue to listen to the feedbacks of a variety of interested parties, gather information on what is being done in other countries, and review the issue from many different perspectives.
Series-E banknotes issued in November 2004 (Heisei 16) have tactile marks that make it possible for people who are visually impaired to tell the difference between the notes with fingers. Textured marks are made with deep intaglio printing.
In May 2014 (Heisei 26), the transparent layer with the hologram (glossy transparent seal) that is attached to the bottom left of the front of the Series-E 5,000 yen note was made 1.7 times larger and the shape was also changed.
This change enhances the ease with which this banknote can be differentiated from other denominations because the different size of transparent layer with the hologram feels different from other banknotes, while minimizing the effect this revision has on ATMs and other cash handling machines.
- Note:Dimensions, designs, etc. of the Series-E 5,000 yen note do not change with this revision.
As part of our efforts to provide those who are visually impaired with a means to identify the difference between Bank of Japan notes, the National Printing Bureau released “U・Qui・Ch-kun,” an app for identifying banknotes (for iPhone). The app was released on December 3, 2013 (Heisei 25), and is available for download free of charge.