Australia touts its most valuable coin ever | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 04.09.2018
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Australia touts its most valuable coin ever

Australia has unveiled the country's most expensive coin for collectors. It comes with pink diamonds and is considered legal tender, with the coin now waiting to be sold to the highest bidder.

Australia's Perth Mint on Tuesday presented a gold coin encrusted with rare pink diamonds worth 2.48 million Australian dollars ($1.8 million, €1.65 million) to meet growing demand for high-end collectibles among ultrarich people.

The 2-kilogram treasure, which depicts a sailing ship, a gold prospector and boab trees found in Western Australia (WA), is considered legal tender and will be sold to the highest bidder.

It is the most valuable coin ever made in Australia and is expected to go to a buyer from Asia or the Middle East.

'Rags-to-riches tale'

It was "released in response to the distinct increase in demand for exclusive luxury items," said Perth Mint Chief Executive Richard Hayes.

"The coin showcases rare pink stones handset in the most famed of precious metals, telling the inspirational rags-to-riches tales of mining for these prized resources."

Called "Discovery," it was modeled after the "Holey Dollar," one of Australia's first coins, with a private collector paying 495,000 Australian dollars for one of those back in 2013.

Why is it so precious?

A key attraction are the four pink diamonds from the renowned Argyle mine in Australia's remote western Kimberley region, including a 1.02-carat emerald cut.

"In terms of pink diamonds themselves, you can fit the whole year's production literally into the palm of your hand," said Richard Hayes.

WA Mines Minister Bill Johnston said the final product was a tribute to Western Australia's craftsmanship.

"It's a testament to the quality of workmanship that the Perth Mint can do that we're able to produce this Discovery coin," he said.

"West Australians might not realize the extensive activity here at Perth Mint. It's an important tourist destination but it also is a major export industry."

hg/ap (AFP, ABC)

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