A new marketing organisation, GoldCorp Australia, was established. The aim of the program was to add value to precious metal products produced in Australia and market those products worldwide to benefit the Australian mining industry and the nation as a whole.

On 18 June 1987, following the enormous success of the Nugget coins, the Australian Government approved the issuing of legal tender coinage in platinum and silver to be produced at the Perth Mint. This decision resulted in the creation of the Australian Koala platinum coin series which was released in September 1988.

The three-year commemorative series of silver coins, the Holey Dollar and Dump were released in November the same year. In 1990, the Australian Kookaburra, a one ounce silver bullion coin was added to the family of precious metals coins, replacing the Holey Dollar and Dump.

The continued success of Australia's precious metals coinage led to further developments in 1991 when coins of one kilogram, ten ounces and two ounces were introduced to each of the gold, platinum and silver bullion coin ranges. These were the largest bullion coins ever minted and, at the time of its first issue, the kilogram silver Kookaburra was the biggest legal tender coin of any type issued this century.

Then, late in 1994, the Perth Mint received in principle approval from the Federal Treasurer to expand the Australian Precious Metals Coin Program to include a palladium issue and a new gold coin issue. Thus, in October 1995 the one ounce Australian Emu palladium coin was launched. In November 1995, the Australian Lunar gold coin series, featuring designs from the traditional Chinese lunar calendar, was released internationally.

The success of the Australian Precious Metals Coin Program has firmly established the status of the Perth Mint as Australia's specialist precious metals mint and cemented its international reputation for innovation and products of the highest standards of craftsmanship and quality.

The issue of privy marked versions of many of the bullion releases since 1992, particularly 1 ounce and 2 ounce silver kookaburra coins, has opened up a whole new sector of numismatic collector interest.

The limited mintages and worldwide interest in these coins has ensured rapid increases in the secondary market valuation of almost every privy marked coin released. Buoyed by this success, the Perth Mint has significantly increased the mintages and varieties of privy marked coins released since 1996. The valuation of most privy marked coins issued between 1992 and 1995 has stabilized or even fallen in the last couple of years, providing evidence that the market has reached saturation point and that some collectors are moving out. The Perth Mint will need to be careful to avoid a similar fate for these issues to that of the Canberra Mint's proof coin issues of the early 1980's.

In 1996, a new annual gold bullion series was introduced specifically targeted towards the Asian market. The three coins, 1oz, 1/4oz and 1/10oz, were released to celebrate the Chinese Lunar Calendar - the first year of release being the Year of the Mouse. In 1999, the series was augmented by a five coin silver release - Kilogram, 10oz, 2oz, 1oz and 1/2oz. - the first year of issue being the Year of the Rabbit.

Sources:
'Australian Coins, Notes & Medals' - Bill Myatt & Tom Hanley - 1980.
'Designs for Australian Decimal Coins' - February 1965 - Commonwealth Treasury.
'Rigby's Australian Coin & Banknote Guide' - Greg McDonald, 1983.
' Australia's Coins and Notes' - 1993 - Keith Sutton, Australian Government Publishing Service.
'The Tenth Proof Issue of the Australian Koala Platinum Coins' - Perth Mint Booklet - 1997.

Copyright © 2001 Australian Stamp & Coin Coy Pty. Ltd.