The euro

On 1 January 1999, Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain adopted the euro as their common currency.

The euro is now the official currency of 20 Member States in the European Union (those mentioned above plus Greece, Slovenia, Malta, Cyprus, Slovakia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Croatia). It is also used officially in Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and in the Vatican City, as well as in Montenegro and Kosovo without a formal arrangement.

At present, 346 million people use euro banknotes and coins, which have become a tangible symbol of European integration.