The Treasury of the British islands has announced the issue of new coins to celebrate the upcoming Lunar New Year, which has been celebrated since 2600 B.C. and is based on the cycles of the moon.
February 8, 2016 will see the start of the Lunar Year under the sign of the Monkey. The original shape of the coin replicates in the shape of a Chinese lock charm, giving it a unique appeal. This type of charm is based on the traditional Chinese device used to safeguard possessions and property, while protecting a person from evil and bringing good luck, fortune, official rank, and long life. They are usually presented to family and loved ones and placed under pillows at the start of the Lunar New Year.
The coins are produced by the Pobjoy Mint, UK on behalf of the Treasury of the British Virgin Islands; they are available in bronze and fine silver, with both versions being struck in a beautiful Proof finish. The silver version is available with the Cherry Blossom design, highlighted in a stunning colored finish.
The reverse design on the coin shows an intrepid monkey walking along a branch surrounded by cherry blossoms, which symbolize good luck. The obverse of each coin features a new effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, exclusive to the Pobjoy Mint.
The bronze lock coin is presented in a lycee, or money gift pack, traditionally given as a gift during Lunar New Year. Each pack is accompanied by an 80 cm red ribbon that can be threaded through the coin. The silver coin is encapsulated in an acrylic capsule for protection and housed in a stunning red box; it also has an 80 cm red ribbon.