Thursday, August 17, 2017

2017 Sarawak banknote: Fantasy or real?

A Malaysian online news recently reported about new 50 Dollar Sarawak banknote with a portrait of Tun Pehin Sri Haji Abdul Taib bin Mahmud, the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak auctioned in eBay by International eBay seller Yuri Minkin.

Sarawak bankote

In the report, someone from Sarawak government mention that it is an offence to prints a banknote with a portrait of a Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak and state coat. 200 people have purchased the banknote so far and the government will investigate this matter.

The latest banknote is a 100 dollar with calm or angry crocodile variety on the banknote reverse. In the future, the will make a design of a 500 dollar with Hornbill on it.

Our search find out that the 2017 Sarawak banknotes sold by Yuri Minkin and the banknote is the work of French graphic artist, Franck Medina. Mr. Medina of Kamberra banknotes is famous for his fantasy banknotes.

One of his famous creation is the Equatorial Territories (2014), the private exclusive series of polymer banknotes that are taking collector's world by storm. This stunning series of polymer banknotes dedicated to geographies located within the Equatorial Belt. This series of banknotes celebrates native cultures and local animals populating the chosen geographies.

One of the note for the Bank of the Equatorial Territories is a 20 Equatorial Francs for Borneo.

Equatorial Francs

Yuri Minkin is a renown banknote collector, a members of International Bank Note Society (IBNS) and one of the largest suppliers of World Paper Money in the world. Searching at yuri Ebay store, (http://stores.ebay.com/yuri111) we found the 2017 Sarawak 100 dollar banknote with different variety of the banknotes.

Sarawak 100 dollars

The banknote have some security features like pattern watermarked paper, microprint, individual serial numbers and UV seal in the front. Only 800 pcs of the banknotes printed and the banknote printed by Gabris banknote. Each banknote have a different variety; Calm and Angry Tiger, Calm and Angry Crocodile.

For collectors, these are all just fantasy banknotes and we know it is not legal tender. Some collectors collect it because of the design and people who design the banknote. Franck Medina fantasy coins and banknotes have been around for over 25 years. I am sure many collectors collect Franck Medina fantasy banknotes but I am not sure why Mr. Medina select Sarawak as one of his subject.

Is it because of the report about Sabah and Sarawak want to separate from Malaysia by other online news few years back?

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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

2017 SEA games coins launched by BNM

Today, YB Datuk M. Saravanan, Deputy Minister of Youth & Sports launched commemorative coins in conjunction with the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and 9th ASEAN Para Games. The coins will be available for sale from Tuesday, 29 August 2017. Further information on the sale will be informed to the public in a press release prior to the sale date.

RIMAU SEA Games

The official mascot of the Games named RIMAU is inspired by the graceful and powerful Malayan Tiger. RIMAU stands for Respect, Integrity, Move, Attitude and Unity. The words “BANGKIT BERSAMA” is the theme of the Games which signifies the coming of age for Southeast Asia as a community. The words “SUKAN SEA KE-29” and “SUKAN PARA ASEAN KE-9” is depicted on the upper and lower circumference of the coin.

10 Ringgit

The words “BANK NEGARA MALAYSIA” as the issuing authority of the commemorative coin is featured on the upper circumference of the coin, while the face value of the coin is inscribed on the lower circumference. The centre of the coin features the official logo of the Games which is the Wau Bulan, while the combination of stripes and shards of colour is collated from the flags of all Southeast Asian countries.


Specifications of the commemorative coins are as follows:

1. Coloured Silver Commemorative Coin (proof)
This proof coloured coin is made of Fine Silver with 99.9 purity and weighs 31.10 grams. It has a face value of RM10 and will be sold at RM230 a piece. The mintage quantity is 700 pieces.
Note: Price stated is subject to GST of 6%.

2. Nordic Gold Brilliant Uncirculated (B.U) Commemorative Coin
The Nordic Gold (B.U) coin has a face value of RM1 and will be sold at RM10 each. The mintage quantity is 13,000 pieces.
Note: Price stated is subject to GST of 6%.

3. Set of 2
These commemorative coins are also available in Sets of 2. The Set of 2 comprises the coloured silver proof and nordic gold proof coins. This set will be sold at RM280 per set (price is subject to GST of 6%) with 1,300 sets available.

Display units of the coins will be available for public viewing from Monday, 21 August 2017 at Bank Negara Malaysia’s offices located in Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching and Kuala Terengganu. The coins will be available for sale from Tuesday, 29 August 2017. Further information on the sale will be informed to the public in a press release prior to the sale date.

The SEA Games will take place between 19 and 30 August 2017 and ASEAN Para Games will be held from 17 to 23 September 2017. The Games coincide with the celebration of Malaysia’s 60th Independence Day as well as Malaysia Day.
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Monday, August 14, 2017

RBS £10 note to enter circulation on October 4

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) will issue its first £10 polymer note to the general public on 4th October 2017. The bank announced the launch date of its new polymer £10 note and unveiled the face of the forthcoming £20 note at its historic branch at St Andrew Square, Edinburgh.

Scotland £10 polymer

The £10 note features an illustration of Scottish mathematician and astronomer Mary Somerville and is the second in a new series of ‘Fabric of Nature’ themed notes made from De La Rue’s Safeguard® polymer material. The choice of Mary Somerville for the note was made following a public vote across social media.

The new note contains a variety of new security features, making it difficult to counterfeit but easy to authenticate, and is the first Royal Bank of Scotland note to feature raised braille details to help the visually impaired.

Behind Mary’s portrait sits an illustration of her hometown of Burntisland. In a nod to her astronomical work, a moon diagram taken from her book, Mechanism of the Heavens, appears when the note is viewed under UV light. The reverse of the note features a pair of otters, most commonly seen in the UK on the West of Scotland. The note also features words from acclaimed Scottish poet, Norman MacCaig.

Speaking at the launch at the bank’s flagship St Andrew Square branch in Edinburgh, CEO Ross McEwan said: “At the Royal Bank of Scotland, we feel that a banknote’s value is more than just the figure printed across its front - it is our symbol which lives in people’s pockets and touches everyday lives.

“It has been 30 years since we produced a new £10 note and as the Royal Bank of Scotland, we wanted the public to help influence the design. They helped influence our theme of Fabric of Nature and helped us consider the impact Mary Somerville has had on our understanding of the world in which we live. It is fitting that our most advanced note yet will carry her portrait.”

The new £10 note will be 15% smaller than its paper equivalent and the new material will be cleaner, more secure and more durable than traditional cotton notes, on average lasting 2.5 times longer.

The creation of the new note involved a number of key Scottish arts organisations and designers including Graven Images, Nile, Stucco, Timorous Beasties, O’Street and the Glasgow School of Art. In total, 27 different designers and artists have been involved in its development.

The new £20 note will feature philanthropist and entrepreneur Catherine Cranston, famous for the Willow Tearooms. Catherine, from Glasgow, made her mark for her series of tearooms across the city.

Source: Royal Bank of Scotland

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Friday, August 11, 2017

1794 Flowing Hair Dollar Sells for $2.8 Million

Incredible Lord St. Oswald-Norweb 1794 Flowing Hair Dollar Sells for $2.8 Million in the Stack’s Bowers Galleries August 2017 ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction. The coin was last sold at public auction in November 1988 in Bowers and Merena’s auction of the Norweb Collection.

Flowing Hair Dollar

This specimen has a fascinating but familiar story, following the sale just two years ago of its sibling, the MS-66+ (PCGS) Lord St. Oswald-Ostheimer 1794 dollar, in the Stack's Bowers Galleries D. Brent Pogue Collection, Part II sale. In that September 2015 auction, the Pogue counterpart realized $4,993,750.

These two 1794 silver dollars had been obtained by English gentleman farmer William Strickland on his tour of the young United States from September 20, 1794 to July 29, 1795. During his visit, Strickland journeyed throughout New England and the Mid-Atlantic, even meeting with Thomas Jefferson at Monticello and with then-President George Washington at Mount Vernon. The two coins were among a diverse group of 84 federal and pre-federal coins gathered during his 10 months in America and they remained together for the first 170 years of their existence, until they were offered as part of the Lord St. Oswald cabinet by Christie's in 1964.

Certified MS-64 (PCGS) and approved by Certified Acceptance Corporation, this near-Gem is one of the finest known examples of the 1,758 silver dollars struck bearing this inaugural date. Fewer than 150 examples are thought to remain. The stunning example offered is fourth finest in the Condition Census and third finest among all Mint State 1794 Flowing Hair dollars seen by PCGS.

Over the years, Stack's Bowers Galleries has forged a legacy of handling the very finest 1794 dollars extant, including having sold every known Mint State example at least once over the past three decades. The Specimen-66 (PCGS) Carter-Cardinal-Morelan 1794 silver dollar, sold by the firm in January 2013, set the record for the highest auction price realized for any coin at over $10 million.

For more information about the firm’s upcoming auctions, visit www.StacksBowers.com or call 1-800-458-4646 for more details.

Source: Stack Bowers
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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

BNM forex losses Royal Commission of Inquiry begins

Today, the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) into Bank Negara Malaysia's foreign exchange losses of billions of ringgit in the 1980s and 1990s officially began at 9.35am. The five-man panel, chaired by former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan, who is also Petronas president.

BNM forex losses

The panel decided to proceed with the inquiry as they saw no reason to recuse themselves as they were appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

"We concurred that the composition of the commission has been consented by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and therefore we shall continue the proceeding," Sidek said.

Earlier, lawyers Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla and R. Sivarasa, who held a watching brief for former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and former opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, respectively, made an oral application to recuse Sidek and co-chairman of the Special Task Force to facilitate Business (Pemudah) Tan Sri Saw Choo Boon from being a panel member.

The application was made on the grounds that Sidek and Saw were earlier involved in the Special Task Force probing the case.

Haniff said members of the recommending body should not form the panel deciding on this matter and that the issue of panel composition is important to ensure a fair hearing.

On another application by both lawyers to actively participate in the proceeding, the panel decided that the issues that can and will be raised are subject to relevancy, as per the terms of reference.

In objecting to the lawyers' application earlier, conducting officer of the RCI, Datuk Suhaimi Ibrahim, said the application had no basis as there is no rule against the composition of this commission or on whether a person involved in the earlier task force could not be a panel of the RCI.

After having concluded the matter, the panel proceeded to read out the five terms of reference of the RCI which included;
i) To determine the validity of the claim that losses had been incurred by BNM due to the forex dealings in the 1990s and its impact on the economy to the country.
ii) To determine whether BNM's forex dealings which incurred losses had contravened the provisions of the Central Bank Ordinance 1958 or any other relevant laws.
iii) To determine whether there were elements of deliberate concealment of facts and information and misleading statements made in the Cabinet, Parliament and public regarding the losses incurred by BMN due to the forex dealings.
iv) To recommend appropriate action to be taken against parties involved directly and/or indirectly if they are found to have caused the losses incurred by BNM and concealed the fact and information regarding the said losses.
v) To recommend the course of action to ensure similar events will not be repeated.

"The commissioners shall complete the inquiry and present a report to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong within three months as stipulated.

"Therefore, given the constraint of time and power, the commissioners shall focus on the terms of reference of the RCI and will not allow any interference or any person that are not related to it," Sidek said.

The panel fixed a 10-day hearing beginning August 21 at the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya and is open to the public.

The RCI was announced on June 21 following the STF’s preliminary investigation on claims that Bank Negara Malaysia racked up US$10 billion in foreign exchange losses during the early 1990s.

Meanwhile, outside the court, Haniff said they would file a further application on the decision of the panel.

"We feel that the current composition of the RCI is against the law and natural justice," he said.

The other members of the panel are High Court judge Datuk Wira Kamaludin Md Said, chief executive officer of Bursa Malaysia Datuk Seri Tajuddin Atan, and co-chairman and member of the Malaysian Institute of Accountants K.Puspanathan.

Source:


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