When will I find one in my change?
The first circulating coins with the new effigy will be released by banks and distribution partners. You will see the new effigy in your change in due course.
Why is The King on our coins?
The determination of Australia's currency is the responsibility of the Australian Government. The Royal Australian Mint, as a prescribed agency within the Commonwealth Government portfolio of the Treasury, requires authorisation to change coinage characteristics. Any direction to change the designs of the obverse on Australian coins has been decided by those bodies.
Will The King wear a crown on our coins?
No, as with some previous British kings, and unlike The Queen, King Charles III does not wear a crown in his portrait. The choice to wear a crown is a personal one of the Monarch.
Will coins bearing the image of The Late Queen need to be taken out of circulation/replaced with coins featuring The King?
Existing coins will continue to remain in circulation until they are recycled due to wear and tear. Coins with the effigy of King Charles III will gradually replace the old coins. There will not be a recall of coins currently in circulation and they will remain legal tender.
What is the process for changing the effigy used on coins for a new Monarch?
When there is a new Monarch, the Royal Australian Mint will be guided by the Australian Government on what to depict on the obverse of Australian coins. The effigy transition process from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to King Charles III may go as follows:
- Receive Royal Approved portrait from the Royal Mint
- Portrait is incorporated into the obverse designs for all coin denominations and sizes
- Royal Australian Mint undergoes trialling of new coins
- Currency determination
- Release of new coins through banks and distribution partners
Is there an historical precedent for this process?
The last change of Monarch was more than 70 years ago. While there is precedent for the process of transitioning the new effigy on our coins, the process has changed significantly since that time. The Mint will be guided by the Australian Government and associated authorities on protocols and timings for the proposed change.
Will all Commonwealth nations have the same effigy?
Not all Commonwealth nations use the same effigy at the present. The effigy is granted to Commonwealth Nations upon request to the Royal Mint.
Is it a legal requirement to have the Head of Commonwealth on Australian coins?
The legal responsibility for deciding the design of Australia’s circulating coins resides with the Treasurer. Traditionally, Australian legal tender coins bear the effigy of the Monarch on the obverse. There is no royal prerogative or legal requirement for this to be the case.
Given Australia is a Commonwealth nation, the Royal Australian Mint will continue to design, manufacture and distribute Australian coins featuring the reigning monarch on the obverse until such time that it is instructed to do otherwise from the Australian Government.
Does Australia have to change the effigy used on our coins? Can we keep the current effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II?
Australian coinage is traditionally struck with an image of the reigning Monarch on the obverse. The determination of Australia's currency is the responsibility of the Australian Government. The Royal Australian Mint, as a prescribed agency within the Commonwealth Government portfolio of the Treasury, requires authorisation to change coinage characteristics. Any direction to change the currency or the denominations of Australian coins would be decided by those bodies.
Will the effigy of the new Monarch be facing the opposite direction of the Queen on the new coins?
Yes, in keeping with tradition, the new Monarch will face the opposite direction to their predecessor in the profile portrait depicted on Australian coinage.
Will the Mint maintain the effigy’s medallic orientation?
Traditionally Australian coins have maintained the same medallic orientation.
Was it an expensive process to update the effigy? What were the costs?
The cost for adopting a new effigy on Australian coins is negligible.
How many coins of each denomination will be produced during the first year of the new effigy?
Standard circulating coins are produced to bank demand which is forecasted each year, with contingency stock. There will be an allocation of every denomination, but exact quantities will be based on bank demand.
How many coins featuring the old effigy are in circulation?
Since opening in 1965, the Royal Australian Mint has produced over 15 billion decimal coins bearing the effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Once coins are released into circulation there is not a way of monitoring exactly how many remain in circulation. Up until 2016, the Mint had produced 15 billion, 689 million and 130 thousand circulating coins. Mintages after this time are tentative.
How many effigies of Queen Elizabeth II featured on Australia’s coins?
Since Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation in 1953, six effigies of the Queen have appeared on Australian coin obverses. Previous effigies were designed by Mary Gillick (1953), Arnold Machin (1966), Raphael Maklouf (1985), and Ian Rank-Broadley (1998). During 2000, Royal Australian Mint designer Vladimir Gottwald’s effigy was used on the 2000 50c Royal Visit coin, and a number of numismatic coins since.
The most recent effigy of Her Majesty, designed by Jody Clark, is the sixth effigy to appear on Australian coinage. This effigy has been used since 2019.
Will the Royal Australian Mint produce a commemorative coin for the coronation of the new Monarch?
The Royal Australian Mint is unable to disclose information regarding future coin releases as dates and details are held in confidence and will only become available once the coin/coins are released. This information will be advised in due course.
Will the Mint release a coin set with both effigies?
The Mint is unable to disclose information regarding future coin releases. Dates and details are held in confidence and will only become available once the coin/coins are released. This information will be advised in due course.
Will the Mint be doing sachets or rolls of circulating coins with the new effigy?
Sachets and rolls of circulating coins have traditionally been available as a Coin Swap at the Mint’s outreach, Pop-Up and Coin Swap events. We expect this will continue to be the case for coins bearing the new monarch
Will the Royal Australian Mint begin planning for the successor of King Charles III?
The Royal Australian Mint will continue to design, manufacture and distribute Australian coins featuring His Majesty’s portrait on the obverse until it is instructed to do otherwise from the Australian Government.
Why was the effigy chosen?
The new effigy is the official Commonwealth Effigy designed by the UK Royal Mint with Royal Approval.
When will the Royal Australian Mint cease using the Queen Elizabeth II Memorial Effigy?
The Royal Australian Mint will continue to use the Queen Elizabeth II Memorial Obverse until May 2024. Some of the planned early 2024 coin releases have already been approved with the memorial obverse.