- Title: NETHERLANDS: NETHERLANDS SCRAPS IT'S CURRENCY THE GUILDER IN FAVOUR OF THE EURO
- Date: 29th January 2002
- Summary: (U5) AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS (JANUARY 28, 2002) (REUTERS) 1. SLV FLOWERS AND SOUVENIRS FOR SALE; EURO SIGN ON STAND WITH WOODEN SHOES CLOGS (2 SHOTS) 0.11 2. MV MAN AND WOMAN COUNTING EURO COINS TO PAY FOR FLOWERS; MAN RECEIVING FLOWERS (2 SHOTS) 0.30 3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UNIDENTIFIED MAN IN THE STREET SAYING "As long as I have enough euros it would not matter much. I would love to have more euros than Guilders at the moment." 0.42 4. SCU WOMAN TAKING EUROS OUT BAG; SALESWOMAN COUNTING COINS; CUSTOMER RECEIVING CHANGE AND FLOWERS (3 SHOTS) 1.07 5. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DIANE ELSHOUT SAYING: "Oh yes I have a lot of emotions actually. First of all I thought our money was really beautiful and I don't think the euro money is particularly beautiful. I find it pretty old fashioned and dull colours. I thought we would somehow make a jump into time, but in the design it didn't really happen. I think right now for me the most difficult part is that I don't have any emotional connection with the value of the euro and that influences the way I spend my money." 1.39 6. SCU HANDFUL OF EURO COINS 1.45 7. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SALESWOMAN SASKIA DE KOK SAYING "No, it doesn't matter to me. I am getting used to it and the guilder is finished. Past tense." 1.54 8. MV DE KOK SELLING FLOWERS 2.12 UTRECHT, THE NETHERLANDS (JANUARY 28, 2002) (REUTERS) 9. SCU CAKE IN THE SHAPE OF EURO SIGN; WOMEN SERVING CAKE TO DUTCH FINANCE MINISTER GERRIT ZALM AND TO DIRECTOR OF THE DUTCH CENTRAL BANK NOUT WELLINK; SCU ZALM EATING CAKE; SCU WELLINK EATING CAKE (4 SHOTS) 2.40 10. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DUTCH FINANCE MINISTER GERRIT ZALM SAYING "I don't have sentiments in saying goodbye to the guilder. I think that everybody is excited about the new currency. A lot of people are already collecting coins from other countries and spending euros in other countries. It is a great improvement in Europe." 2.59 11. SCU EURO CAKE BEING CUT INTO PIECES 3.10 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 13th February 2002 12:00
- Location: AMSTERDAM AND ULTRECHT, NETHERLANDS
- Country: Netherlands
- Reuters ID: LVA6OYXY7G3NBQYAXAFDQZK09GST
- Story Text: The Netherlands has become the first of a dozen
European countries to kiss its currency farewell. But to the
pragmatic Dutch, money, regardless of colour or size, remains
The Netherlands, which set the most ambitious target
for scrapping its currency among the 12 countries adopting the
euro in 2002, consigned the guilder to history in the early
hours of Monday (January 28) morning.
After midnight its 16 million people, many of whom braved
icy temperatures in December to snap up free euro coin starter
kits ahead of the New Year's Day launch of the currency, could
no longer buy a beer, coffee or a meal with anything but euros.
Most seemed to accept the guilders demise as legal tender
without even a hint of sentimentality.
"As long as I have enough euros it would not matter much.
I would love to have more euros than Guilders at the moment,"
laughed one man after buying a bunch of fresh flowers with a
handful of euro coins.
"It doesn't matter to me. I am getting used to it and the
guilder is finished. Past
tense," said Saskia de Kok who works as a saleswoman at the
flower market in the heart of Amsterdam.
The Dutch readily exchanged their last guilders for euros
this month as 2.8 billion euro coins and 360 million banknotes
went into local circulation to replace the guilder. Within
weeks most shoppers were paying only with euros.
While the Deutschmark technically ceased to be legal
tender in neighbouring Germany at midnight on December 31,
Berlin decided to ease the transition by giving shoppers and
retailers a few months leeway to spend their last marks in
But Sunday night was the deadline for the Dutch to spend
their guilders. Commercial
banks will continue to exchange the old currency for euros for
free until the end of March.
Ireland and France, which alongside the Netherlands were
the first countries to hand
out euro coin starter kits in December, are next. They will
phase out the punt and franc as legal tender on February 9th
and 17th respectively.
But the demise of the guilder passed with little fanfare
or sentimentality. The smooth transition from guilder to euro
was however celebrated with cake.
At a news conference of the Dutch central bank there were
no tears for the guilder, but cake was served to celebrate the
"I don't have sentiments in saying goodbye to the
guilder. I think that everybody is
excited about the new currency. A lot of people are already
collecting coins from other
countries and spending euros in other countries. It is a great
improvement in Europe." said Dutch Finance minister Gerrit Zalm.
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