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The Warsaw Voice » Business » May 31, 2012
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Euro 2012 Coins from Poland’s Central Bank
May 31, 2012   
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Jerzy Stopyra, head of the Issue and Treasury Department of the National Bank of Poland (NBP), the country’s central bank, talks to The Warsaw Voice.

The National Bank of Poland apparently has a treat in store for soccer fans in conjunction with the UEFA EURO 2012™ championships. Is that true?
Yes. We will issue a set of two gold and five silver coins plus a special 2-zloty coin in celebration of the Euro 2012 European soccer championships. I believe coin collectors will be most interested in obtaining a set of four silver, 10-zloty coins which form a single image when put together. This is the first such issue in the history of Polish numismatics and indeed something unique internationally. Each coin in the set depicts different landmarks of the Euro 2012 host cities and soccer players in action. I should also mention a 20-zloty coin which along with a pad-printed Euro 2012 logo bears the images of four Polish stadiums where Euro 2012 matches will be played.

We have gone to great lengths to ensure that all the other coins minted on this once-in-a-lifetime occasion are just as exceptional. The most expensive and coveted coins will probably be the gold ones, including the two-ounce 500-zloty coin. Only 1,000 of these will be available at zl.16,000 each. With collectors in mind, we have also prepared 4,000 100-zloty gold coins priced zl.1,600.

Anyone who cannot afford to pay that much can buy one of 1 million coins made of the non-precious Nordic Gold alloy. The coin’s face value is zl.2 and that is the amount for which the coins can be exchanged at cashier’s desks at the NBP’s regional branches. I am confident all the coins will serve as beautiful souvenirs of the championships.

When will the coins be available?
As of Friday, June 1, regional NBP branches in 16 province capitals will start exchanging the 2-zloty coins. The silver and golden coins will be available from June 4 at local NBP branches and from Kolekcjoner, the NBP’s online store. Because of a license contract we have with UEFA, we have given up on auctions and so the NBP will set the prices, basing them on prices of precious metals and production costs.

Seeing that the championships are being organized jointly by Poland and Ukraine, will the two countries be minting a coin together?
Yes, we have reached an agreement with the central bank of Ukraine regarding the matter. Under the agreement, the two central banks will each strike a coin which together will form one disk. The coins, with face values of zl.10 and 10 hryvni, will be sold as one set. This too is quite unlike anything else in numismatics worldwide.

What else is the NBP doing by way of preparation for the Euro 2012 championships?
We have teamed up with the police to launch an educational campaign entitled “Safe Money.” We will remind Polish citizens and advise soccer fans from abroad what Polish banknotes look like and how they are protected. The campaign will be conducted throughout June in Warsaw, Poznań, Gdańsk and Wrocław, the Euro 2012 host cities, and in Cracow. Apart from the police, our partners in the campaign are the Customs Service of the Ministry of Finance and the Polish Trade and Distribution Organization, which brings together the largest shopping chains. Security features on legal tender turn out to be a crucial issue at the moment and many institutions have approached the NBP for information about this. The idea behind the “Safe Money” campaign meets this demand.
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