Israel has owned its coins from 1948. However, the issuance of the very first gold coins was not until 1960 with the denominations remaining in mils and Lirot. The denomination in Sheqalim happened after the state reformed its coinage from 24 February 1980 until 1985. Another reform also took place starting 4 September 1985, which led to the denomination of the New Israel Gold Sheqalim coin.
However, the first ever Israeli Bullion gold Sheqalim coin comes in the denominations of the 10 Sheqalim, the 10 New Sheqalim and the 20 new Sheqalim. It was the first in the series named, “Jerusalem of Gold” and is legal tender. Their pricing is based on the day-to-day international gold price and a considerable markup over the gold price making them valuable for both financial investors and collectors. Being legal tender, trading in the Israeli gold Sheqalim coin does not attract VAT. This series of gold coins depicts the Jerusalem’s historical site with the 2010 issue showing the “Tower of David”. In each coin’s obverse the popular “Lion of Megiddo” shall appear and be retained in subsequent series.
The 10 Israeli gold Sheqalim coin has a diameter of 30 millimeters. It has a gross weight of 17.28 grams and a 0.500 t/oz actual fine gold weight content at 0.900 fineness. The 1987 10 New Sheqalim was issued on the occasion of the 20th commemoration of United Jerusalem’s independence. With a 0.500 t/oz actual fine gold weight at 0.900 fineness, the coin weighs 17.28 grams gross. The 20 New Sheqalim has a diameter of 35 millimeters and is 31.1035 grams heavy. It has gold content of 1.0 t/oz with a 0.999 fineness. There have been considerations by the Bank of Israel to drop the term, “New” in the name of the coinage, which could result in another review of the coinage.
The Israel gold Sheqalim coin is minted by KOMSCO (Korea Minting and Security Printing Corporation), which headquartered in Daejeon in South Korea. The Mint was established in 1951 and is a government-owned company. However, the Bank of Israel is responsible for the regulation and distribution of the Israel Gold Sheqalim coins.