Coins of Malaysia

In the 19th century, the currency circulating in the Malay Peninsula was the silver Mexican dollar whose exchange value fluctuated according to the changes in the prices of silver. This became highly inconvenient to traders whose currencies were not tied to silver which led to the establishment of a new dollar. The responsibility for currency issue changed hands with the oncoming World Wars and finally settled with the Bank Negara Malaysia (the Central Bank of Malaysia).

On June 12th, 1967 the Bank Negara Malaysia issued the Malaysian dollar for public use. This currency replaced the British Borneo and Malaya dollar at par value and led to the introduction of Malaysian Ringgit. There were three series of the Malaysian Ringgit. The first series came out in 1967 and saw the introduction of Malaysia coins in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 sen Malaysia. The 1 Malaysian ringgit coin was introduced and circulated four years later. The Malaysian coins produced were made of cupronickel and contained the federal star found on the national flag of Malaysia and the then Malaysian Houses of Parliament.

The second series of coins of Malaysia were designed by Low Yee Kheng and released in 1989. These had a totally different design and were made of an alloy of copper, zinc, and tin. These coins had items that represented the Malaysian culture as opposed to those made in the first phase. Most of the Malaysian coins produced in these two series are no longer in circulation. The third series of Malaysian coins were minted at the Bank Negara Mint and supplied by the Poogsan Corporation of South Korea as a directive by the Deputy Finance Minister, Datuk Donald in 2011. The denominations of the coins currently used are 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen Malaysia.

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