Why Kim Yu-na Coins Are Issued in Tuvalu

      March 08, 2010 11:51

      /Courtesy of Hwadong

      The Korean Olympic Committee on Friday said it will issue commemorative coins to celebrate Kim Yu-na's Olympic gold medal and share the moment of joy. But they will be issued in Tuvalu instead of Korea and have been minted in Perth, Australia. Tuvalu, a member of the British Commonwealth, lies northeast of Australia and has a population of just 12,000.

      The Kim Yu-na commemorative coins come in gold and silver, with the face value denominated in Australian dollars. The gold coin with the face value of 25 dollars will sell for W880,000 (US$1=W1,141) and the 1-dollar silver coin for W121,000. "The Bank of Korea Act stipulates that coins minted by the Korea Minting and Security Printing Corporation cannot be sold to generate added value," said the KOC. "So we had no choice but to manufacture the coins overseas." Hwadong, the company that sells the coins, said it needed to look for a partner with the latest technology and signed a contract with the Perth Mint in Australia, which got direct approval from Tuvalu to circulate the coins there.

      The head of the coins features an image of Kim's free skating performance and signature, and the KOC's insignia. A total of 30,000 gold and 30,000 silver coins have been minted. Portions of the profits will be used to help the development of sports in Korea. Hwadong has been involved in issuing commemorative coins for the late president Kim Dae-jung made in Norway and for Cardinal Stephen Kim Sou-hwan manufactured in Liberia.

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