China's modern gold coins have captivated collectors around the world, largely due to the introduction of the China Gold Panda in 1982. It's the China Mint's signature gold coin, but many other China Gold Coins have been issued over the years, some in remarkably small quantities.
There are many different releases of the China Gold Panda coins available, including the 2008 Beijing Olympic Gold, the Dragon and Phoenix, The Unicorn, The Peacock, coins celebrating China's goddess Guan Yin and of course, Lunar Series Gold, which depict the twelve animals of the lunar calendar.
The global desire for Chinese gold coins has grown steadily over the last 30 years. For the first 20 years of production, the world had most of Chinese gold coins to themselves, because it was illegal for Chinese citizens to own gold coins. This resulted with the majority of Chinese coins from this time period to be scattered around the world, making many of the pre-2000 issues extremely hard to find today.
When the law prohibiting Chinese citizens from owning Chinese gold coins was repealed, the market for Chinese gold coins grew steadily within China. Over the last few years, the China Mint has started reserving a portion of many mintages for sale exclusively within China, shrinking the number available worldwide.
If you're wondering how significant this history is, consider the following statement made by the Governor of the People's bank of China on September 19, 2014 about the gold market in China, "an important and integral part of China's financial market. We are now the largest gold producer, as well as the biggest gold importer and consumer in the world. The People's Bank of China will continue to support the sustainable growth and sound development of China's gold market."
Since the People's Bank of China is the issuing authority for China Gold Coins, it seems likely that many new and varied Gold Coins will be coming our way in the future, increasing the interest in Chinese Gold Coins, both old and new. When you consider the future of these coins, keep in mind the huge potential collector base within China. Then look at the availability of China Gold Coins from the past.
China's population is about 1.375 billion, almost five times that of the U.S. population. A few years ago, the U.S. Mint estimated that the number of numismatists actively seeking the State Quarters was about 130 million.This potential demand is virtually immeasurable.
Now consider the supply of Chinese gold coins. For example, many think that China minted hundreds of the 1/10 oz. .9999 fine gold Guan Yin Proof that was issued in 1995; however, they only struck 3,000 Proofs. This is a scarce coin by any standard, but even more scarce when you consider the popularity of Guan Yin, the goddess of Mercy, in Chinese culture.
You could make an incredibly long list of other important Chinese gold coin releases, the Gold Dragon and Phoenix and Gold Unicorn issues from the 1990s being prime examples. These coins will diversify any assortment of numismatics
The Chinese Lunar Coin series is the longest running of the Lunar Coin Series and boasts unique shapes and design. The first Chinese Gold Lunar Coin was an 8g gold coin honoring the Rooster. Since that release in 1981, the China Mint has continued the series every year with new designs, finishes and shapes.