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Ukraine Hryvnia UAH What it is History

Review of "Ukraine Hryvnia (UAH): What it is, History"

Ariel Courage is an experienced editor, researcher, and former fact-checker who has worked for leading finance publications including The Motley Fool and Passport to Wall Street.

What Is the Ukraine Hryvnia (UAH)?

The Ukraine hryvnia (UAH) is the national currency of Ukraine. It was adopted by the government in 1996 and is sometimes referred to as hryvnya or grivna. The currency is divided into 100 kopiykas and is abbreviated as UAH in the foreign exchange market. The National Bank of Ukraine is responsible for printing the currency and maintaining financial stability and economic development.

Key Takeaways

  • The Ukraine hryvnia is the official currency of Ukraine.
  • The currency is issued and maintained by the National Bank of Ukraine.
  • The hryvnia became the national currency in 1996.
  • The hryvnia is abbreviated as UAH in the foreign exchange market.
  • Banknotes are circulated in ₴10, ₴20, ₴50, ₴100, ₴200, ₴500 denominations.

Understanding the Ukraine Hryvnia

Ukraine’s economy, once one of the largest in the Soviet Bloc, has struggled since transitioning to a market economy. Many people have turned to subsistence farming and bartering for daily necessities. The introduction of the hryvnia in 1996 improved the situation somewhat.

The hryvnia, represented by the symbol ₴, was officially put into circulation on Aug. 26, 1996. It is printed and managed by the National Bank of Ukraine. As of October 2022, there were ₴677.7 billion in circulation. Banknotes are available in ₴10, ₴20, ₴50, ₴100, ₴200, and ₴500 denominations. Coins in ₴1, ₴2, and ₴5 denominations replaced bills of the same value between 2018 and 2020. One hryvnia equals 100 kopiykas. The National Bank of Ukraine mints coins in one, two, five, 10, 25, and 50 denominations. The first three coins are no longer legal tender as of Jan. 10, 2019.

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In January 2023, the National Bank of Ukraine will gradually withdraw the 5-, 10-, 20-, and 100-hryvnia paper banknotes designed in 2003-2007 and replace them with new-generation banknotes and coins. The old paper money will be replaced by newly designed circulation coins, including the 5- and 10-hryvnia coins designed in 2018.

The Ukraine hryvnia is not pegged to another currency.

Special Considerations

The hryvnia is used throughout Ukraine, except in Crimea, which adopted the Russian ruble (RUB) in 2014 after annexation by Russia. Initially, there were varying exchange rates between the hryvnia and ruble in the region, but by June 2014, shops stopped using double pricing with the hryvnia and ruble.

History of Ukraine Hryvnia (UAH)

The Ukraine hryvnia became the national currency in 1996, following the collapse of the Soviet Union. The name is derived from a weight unit used in the Slavic region during medieval times.

Between 1917 and 1920, the region used banknotes called karbovanets after declaring independence from the Russian Tsarist Empire. Due to counterfeiting, newer series of banknotes were introduced during World Wars I and II. However, these notes were also easily counterfeited. In 1996, the hryvnia replaced the karbovanets at a rate of 100,000 karbovanets to one hryvnia due to hyperinflation caused by the collapse of the Soviet Union.

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