On April 25, 2023, the NBU released into circulation new 500 Hryven banknotes bearing the signature of the new Governor Andriy Pyshnyi and dated 2023. The release is "part of a planned issuance to ensure the cash circulation of 500 Hryvnia banknotes to replace worn and damaged banknotes," per the NBU. The new note will end up being Pick # 127d, once one is assigned, and will be the 6th issuance of a 500 Hryven note of the new series which began in 2014 with the 100 Hryven banknote. The notes are available to purchase, raw, from several sellers.
As previously mentioned, this is the 6th issuance for this denomination, four for general circulation and 2 commemorative issues. The six varieties are more than any other denomination of the current series, and the four (d) printings for general circulation is tied with the 100 Hryven banknote, of which the fourth general issue was just released in December of 2022.
The 100 & 500 Hryven banknotes of the current series have more signature varieties than any other denomination in the same series, currently twice as many, as they were the first denominations printed (2014 and 2015 respectively) and they are the first Pyshnyi signed notes to be released. All other denominations of the new series were first printed in 2018-19, roughly four years after the 100 & 500, and as a result the 100 & 500 Hryven denominations will probably always have at least one more signature variety than the rest of the denominations in this series.
One could also assume that these are the most heavily used notes in everyday commerce/transactions by the public, and I'm sure the war in Ukraine is playing a factor as several banks defaced many bricks of notes which would need to be replaced, and now could be a good time as things have currently stalled on the front. The current inflation rate of around 24% probably isn't helping matters either, causing lower denominated bills to have less purchasing power and requiring more of them per transaction, which would make larger denominations more desirable. The 100 & 500 Hryven notes seem to be the workhorses of the Ukrainian economy, unfortunately I haven't been able to find printing figures but if I were to go by the number of different prefixes used for each denomination those notes stand head and shoulders above the rest.
The 2021 (2022) 500 Hyrven Commemorative is a quirky little note. It was released with the signature of the previous Governor and postdated, for circulating notes this would be the norm for a period of time until new plates are made with the new Governor's signature, but since it was a commemorative, a onetime issue, it kind of sticks out in the series of notes. The 2021 dated notes with the signature of the previous Governor (Shevchenko), have an additional screen-printed design on the face, over the watermark area, which is the logo for the 300th Anniversary Celebration of the birth of Hryhoriy Skovoroda. The logo helps peg the release date of the note at 2022 (Skovoroda's date of birth being Dec. 3, 1722), print and release dates from the NBU verify this as well, and that it overlaps the current Governor's tenure by a few months just kind of makes it a little more fun to me. The notes were probably already printed prior to Pyshnyi being appointed Governor of the NBU in early October of '22, or too far along to stop production and make new plates. The timing just didn't allow for a change, I guess. The notes were released in late December, the month of Skovoroda's birth, and one has to wonder if Shevchenko didn't drag his feet a little to get one more note out with his signature. Probably not but it's fun to speculate on such things, mainly because that thought would have crossed my mind if I were in the same position. Kind of an "up yours!" or one finger salute on my way out the door.
On a side note, I don't see PMG labeling notes with release dates after the date (year) printed on the note, (postdated notes) much if at all anymore. For example, the 2022, 500 Hryven Commemorative would have in the past been labeled 2021 (2022) on the PMG holder. I think? I wonder if they've stopped labeling notes with postdates like that?
Varieties by denomination.
Currently, new notes are being printed as needed, or so it seems, and there is no telling when the remaining denominations will be updated to include the Pyshnyi signature and new date (year). In 2021 there was a mass printing of every denomination for general circulation, including a separate commemorative in every denomination, with all being released from March to December of that year. In 2021 the order of release was 500, 100, 200, 20, 1000 & 50 Hryven notes, that order could be similarly repeated in 2023, or close to it. If I'm correct in my speculation I would expect to see additional print runs of the higher denominations before the lower ones and I think we may see a new run of each of the remaining denominations, last printed in 2021, before the end of the year. This would be an additional five Pick #'s, including the commemorative scheduled for release in December 2023, that could be potentially released throughout the remainder of the year.