Before Slovenia joined the European Union (EU) and membership required the nation to convert to the euro, currency in Slovenia was represented by the tolar. The tolar replaced the Yugoslavian currency that had been used before Slovenia gained its independence. Banknotes were offered in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1,000, 5,000, and 10,000. There were also coins used, which had the denomination printed on one side and animals native to the country printed on the other side.
The Bank of Slovenia, as the national bank, managed and distributed the currency. The tolar was used in Slovenia for about 15 years. The country’s complicated political history and movement for independence has not had any negative impact on the stability of its currency or economy.
Slovenia joined the EU in 2004, and immediately took the necessary steps towards phasing out the tolar and adopting the euro. Switching to the single currency of EU members is an important part of integration into the EU community. The Bank of Slovenia worked with the country’s government and other EU nations in order to come up with a plan for the currency change. The euro officially became the currency in Slovenia on January 1, 2007. This was a quick and efficient transition, especially compared to the three years that it took the founding EU nations to transition from their own currencies to the euro.
The Bank of Slovenia made it easy for people to change their money. Residents had three months to cash in their tolar for euros, without any charge. Slovenia became the 13th member nation to use the euro. The country and its people credits the government, the national bank, and the European Commission on Economic and Financial Affairs with a smooth and well-communicated transition.