By Bank of Latvia ….
The work by Lithuanian designer Justas Petrulis, i.e. a symbolic plait in which the fates of the three Baltic sisters intertwine, will turn into the common Baltic 2 euro commemorative coin dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Baltic States. This design received the most votes in the public survey in which six coin designs were offered for a vote (per two from Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia).
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14,302 people from all over the world (except Antarctica) participated in the vote, but the vast majority of votes (93%) came from the Baltic States. In total, 4,277 votes were cast for the work by the young Lithuanian designer Justas Petrulis; this is his debut in coin art.
The work by Justas Petrulis symbolizes the common past, present and future of the Baltic States intertwined in a singlet plait. The author expresses the idea of his work in a quatrain:
Baltic sisters plaited their hair
As if one story – joint plait.
Mutual past, present and future,
Century of States unites three Baltic daughters.
Now the practical procedures, including harmonization of the coin designs at European Union institutions, will be commenced to mint the coin.
Six works were submitted for the vote (see here). Their authors are Eglė Ratkutė and Arūnas Žemaitis (work No. 1), Justas Petrulis (work No. 2), Krišs Salmanis (work No. 3), Mall Nukke (work No. 4), Liina Lõõbas and Kristo Kooskora (work No. 5) as well as Rūta Briede and Artis Briedis (work No. 6).
As many as 100 winners were chosen in a draw, and each of them will receive three coins of Brilliant Uncirculated quality in a special souvenir packing – a coin from Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian mintage. The names of the winners are published on the website www.baltijasmoneta.eu. They will be contacted by the organizers of the draw, but the prizes will be sent to them in early 2018 when the coins are issued.
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Latvian and Estonian states and the 100th anniversary of the re-establishment of the Lithuanian statehood, the central banks of the three Baltic States − Bank of Latvia, Bank of Lithuania and Bank of Estonia − plan to issue a 2 euro commemorative coin with a common design in early 2018. This coin will remind the population of the Baltic States and elsewhere in the euro area of the determination of the Baltic nations to defend their independence. The coin is also a testimony of the unity of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia and their readiness to cooperate for the sake of their independence and freedom.
This is the first common 2 euro commemorative coin of the Baltic States. Moreover, it has been created through the involvement of artists and the public of the three countries. As is the case with other 2 euro commemorative coins, the coins of this issue will be valid for settlement across the euro area. The coins will have an identical national side design selected via the public vote, while the name of the issuing country will represent the only difference.
The creation of the first common commemorative coin of the Baltic States in cooperation with the closest neighbors is one of the most prominent accomplishments of the program the Latvian Bank plans to implement in the context of the 100th anniversary of Latvia.
Bank of Latvia is actively involved in the program for Latvia’s centenary celebration. The program is based on the concept of involving the general public, each individual and institution in the process of creating the celebration and long-lasting values. Preparations for Latvia’s centenary will commence with the tasks and events planned already for 2017, but the festivities and activities celebrating Latvia will continue for five years. The Latvian Bank will contribute to Latvia’s centenary program by ensuring research on significant developments in the financial history of Latvia and assessment of the contribution of outstanding personalities. Also, a number of commemorative and collector coin series and several coins dedicated to the foundation of the state will be created.
The Latvian Bank will conclude the centenary celebration by marking the 100th anniversary of the national central bank on November 1, 2022.
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The Bank continues the tradition of minting circulation coins of special design in Latvia. Each year, every euro area country is entitled to issue two 2 euro circulation coins of a special design or commemorative coins as well as mint one more commemorative coin within a joint program of several euro area countries provided that such a program is organized.