THE newly-circulated 50-cent coin featuring Fiji's Paralympic Games gold medallist Iliesa Delana's winning jump cost the Reserve Bank of Fiji $125,000 to produce.
With only 500,000 in circulation, central bank governor Barry Whiteside said the low mintage made the coins a rarity so people would want to save it or collect it.
"The coins themselves cost a bit more than the other ones we minted because of a small mintage, economies of scale so it cost us 25 cents a coin — it's not cheap," he said during the unveiling of the coins in Suva yesterday.
"We just minted our new series and put that in circulation so 500,000 we thought would cater to the demand. I think there will be a demand but we are not looking at producing more at this stage.
"We're very proud of Iliesa. He is a person people can look up to. You don't put anyone on a coin. It has to be a very good achievement, something that makes Fiji sit up and be proud."
He said work on the new 50-cent coin commenced in September last year with various approvals from stakeholders including Delana to proceed with the coinage and make it a reality.
He said the coin could be used to pay for goods and services.
Meanwhile, Delana said he was honoured and humbled by the recognition but was still coming to terms with seeing his achievement on a national coin.
"I am told this coin is in recognition of my achievement. I say this is for all Fijians.
"We are all united and we are one no matter how different our homes may be and no matter how different we all may look," he said.