On December 2, 2023 the United Arab Emirates celebrated their 52nd National Day. This holiday celebrates the UAE’s independence from Britain which took place on December 2, 1971. This holiday is also used to honor Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan who is seen as the founding father of the United Arab Emirates. He is credited with uniting the 7 emirates as well as modernizing the UAE and he also served as the first president. Read along to learn about the new UAE 500 Dirhams for 2023.

Airplanes Flying Above Abu Dhabi Skyline for the UAE National Day | Source: AS

New Banknote Generation

Since 2021 the Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates has been releasing updated versions of their banknote family. So far they have released new 1,000 – 50 – 10 – 5 Dirham polymer banknotes with brand new designs, and top of the line security features. This year is no exception, to coincide with their 52nd National Day they released a brand new 500 Dirhams banknote for 2023. Lets look at some of the previous releases along with the newly released banknote.

Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan | Source: UAE-Embassy

The first updated Dirham banknote was the United Arab Emirates 50 Dirhams released in 2021. This is a polymer banknote colored in blue and white. It commemorates the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the United Arab Emirates on December 2, 1971. Centered on the front side of the banknote are the seven founding fathers holding the UAE flag. On the left is the memorial to the martyrs of the Emirates. It is also known as the Oasis of Dignity. The monument was built across Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. It honors all Emiratis who lost their lives in the line of duty. The banknote’s reverse depicts Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan signing the union document. The Etihad Museum is also shown in the background. 

United Arab Emirates 50 Dirhams | 2021 | Source: Banknote World

The following year the United Arab Emirates 1,000 Dirhams was released in 2022. It’s colored in a brown color scheme and its made out of polymer. The obverse side features a portrait of of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan. An interesting fact is that his portrait comes from a 1976 meeting with NASA space crew from the Apollo 17. In the background is an image of a spaceship in addition to the HOPE Probe Spacecraft from the Emirates Mars Mission that went into orbit in early 2021. The reverse side features an image of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant which is located in Abu Dhabi. In addition, there were 10 and 5 Dirhams released. Click here to view them.

United Arab Emirates 1,000 Dirhams | 2022 | Source: Banknote World

The UAE 500 Dirhams Banknote for 2023

United Arab Emirates 500 Banknote, 2023. The banknote is a symbol of Emirati culture, tourism and sustainability. It’s made from polymer and colored in blue and white. The obverse side features a large image of the Terra Sustainability Pavilion. This structure is Net Zero in energy and water usage. In the windows you can also find images of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The reverse side features images of the Emirati Museum of the Future which is characterized by its distinct oval shape. In addition, you can also find an image of the Emirates Towers, and the Burj Khalifa.

United Arab Emirates 500 Dirhams | 2023 | Source: Central Bank of the UAE


The UAE Introduces a New 500-Dirham Polymer Banknote


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