The Perth Mint - More than a century in precious metals
The history of The Perth Mint started with the founding of the Perth branch of Britain’s Royal Mint in 1899. At the time, gold sovereigns and half sovereigns were used throughout the British Empire as everyday circulating coins and it was the Royal Mint’s responsibility to supply them. Rather than shipping gold to London and then distributing them back to Britain’s colonies, the Royal Mint built a number of branch mints throughout the Empire in places where gold was found. The Perth Mint was one of these – built to refine gold mined in Western Australia and turn it into sovereigns. When sovereigns were withdrawn from circulation in 1931, the Mint used its skills in the production of other coins, while still continuing to refine gold. It remained under British ownership until 1970 when control passed to the Western Australian Government, who owns it to this day.
Gold Corporation was created under its own Act of Parliament (Gold Corporation Act 1987) to take over the operations of the Mint and launch Australia’s official bullion coin program. The Australian Nugget coin was launched in 1987, and was followed by many other successful Australian legal tender bullion coin programs and numismatic and commemorative coins.
Today Gold Corporation, or as it is more commonly known, The Perth Mint, facilitates investment in precious metals not only by supplying coins and bars, but by also providing the opportunity for investing in precious metals without the issues associated with taking physical metal, through the various products offered through Perth Mint Depository. One of these is the Perth Mint Gold product quoted on the Australian Stock Exchange. The Perth Mint has a reputation for innovation and superb quality in its commemorative and numismatic coins and is an important supplier of precious metal blanks to other mints, including some of the other major mints in the world. With over 80% of its turnover is contributed by exports Gold Corporation is the eleventh largest exporter in Western Australia.
A visit to The Perth Mint has become an essential element of any tourist’s visit to the "golden" State of Western Australia. Offering a unique array of attractions, including the spectacular Gold Pour and the chance to handle a 400oz pure gold bar, the Mint’s Gold Exhibition and retail facilities attract thousands of international, interstate and local visitors each year.
Gold Corporation operates Australia’s only LBMA accredited gold refinery, which refines most of Australia’s gold production, gold from surrounding countries and also secondary gold, mainly from Asia. It is one of the highest throughput gold refineries in the world and also refines considerable quantities of silver.
Gold Corporation develops and supplies precious metal related products and services, including:
- Australian legal tender investment coins and bars, which promote the ownership of precious metal for investment purposes;
- precious metal depository products which enable investors to invest in precious metals without having to deal with the security and other issues associated with the keeping of the physical metal;
- proof, numismatic and commemorative coins which are legal tender of Australia and other countries;
- storage and safekeeping for precious metals;
- coin blanks and other precious metal products.
It also operates a tourist attraction based on the themes of gold, coins and their history at The Perth Mint. Through Perth Mint refinery, refining, assaying and other services are supplied to the gold industry. These enhance the value added and export income derived from gold production.
Gold Corporation commits to:
- supplying products, services and experiences which delight customers and users;
- promoting the history and heritage of Australia locally and internationally through its coins;
- preserving its heritage assets and history for the benefit of the community;
- providing fulfilment, development, security and reward to its employees;
- generating an acceptable financial return for its shareholder, the Western Australian Government; and
- paying a fair royalty to the Australian Treasury on Australian legal tender coins issued.
It is committed to promoting high ethical standards, respect for people and the environment and enlightened business practices.
Gold Corporation’s functions, as described in sections 10, 36 and 49 of the Act, include:
- developing, manufacturing and marketing Australian legal tender investment coins and other products that promote the ownership of physical precious metal for investment purposes;
- designing, manufacturing and market proof, commemorative and numismatic coins and related products;
- making available investment products that enable investors to have exposure to the value of precious metals without having to deal with the security and other issues associated with the keeping of the physical metal;
- providing storage and safekeeping facilities for precious metals.
- being a major supplier of precious metal blanks to the mints of the world;
- operating a tourist attraction, based on the themes of gold and minting, that is important to Perth and Western Australia;
- supplying refining and other services to the gold industry of Australia; and
- preserving the historical mint building and artefacts that are part of the heritage of Perth and Australia.