That the euro will become the currency in Estonia from January 1 is probably no surprise to anyone. However, the Estonian Traders Association and the Estonian Banking Association advise shops and service establishments to consider several important aspects to make the changeover smoother.
About 20 per cent of the euros will enter into circulation through commercial establishments
Although it is advisable to use card payments at the beginning of the year to prevent the risk of miscalculation, stores and service establishments have to ensure they have a sufficient supply of cash in good time. It is estimated that 80 per cent of the cash in kroons will be brought to shops during the period of parallel circulation by people who wish to get rid of their kroons in that way; 80 per cent of the euro banknotes will be sent into circulation through ATMs.
Businesses also need to make the preparations necessary for card payments and IT-systems to work.
The importance of cash and especially of coins will increase
The need for cash will increase by up to four times in the period of parallel circulation from January 1 to January 14. Shops have to plan their amounts and nominals in advance using the regular average purchase price, and think through their transportation, storage, safety, additional insurance, etc.
The importance of coins will increase significantly; they are needed for a change. The weight of the coins needed will probably be high. Coins can be ordered only as standard sets of 111€, which weighs 1.57kg, and of 198€, which weighs 2.76kg.
Practical recommendations for the period of parallel circulation:
- Plan a small reserve for the change of year to enable you to take cash in euros from your circulating capital, if necessary.
- If your shop wishes for a security company like G4S to transport the cash, all the necessary agreements have to be made by the end of September at the latest. If it is left until later, there may be no free resources available for you any more.
- During the period of parallel circulation, the number of cash registers in service has to be higher, since settling accounts in two currencies takes more time.
- It is recommended to return change to customers in euros during the period of parallel circulation as this will make the changeover to the euro easier for all of us.