Published: 04.10.2012

The Bank of Latvia has issued a new 1-lats collector coin "Riga Technical University". The artist of the coin is Kristaps Ģelzis.

The Bank of Latvia collector coins are miniature works of art dedicated to the Latvian treasures: events, achievements, people, and the nation's cultural values. This year the Riga Technical University celebrates its 150th anniversary. It is the very first institution of higher learning in the present-day territory of Latvia and the first technical university in the Baltic States. In the course of 150 years of the RTU existence, many outstanding researchers were educated and worked there. The most renowned of the RTU academic staff are Vilhelms Ostvalds (the only Nobel Prize winning chemist of Baltic origin) and Pauls Valdens (chemist and Rector of Riga Polytechnical Institute (University's former name), seven-time Nobel Prize nominee). At present, the restructuring of RTU study processes to provide education, both academic and higher professional that meets the EU standards, and to produce specialists for all major branches of the Latvian economy is going on.

Acknowledging that money is the most influential auxiliary instrument to satisfy human thirst for knowledge and creativity, the artist Kristaps Ģelzis has designed the collector coin dedicated to the RTU as a small yet practically employable tool, which enables the measurements of size, direction and source of origin. Likewise, modern technologies have been of particular importance for the emergence of it as a coin and another tool associating it with the RTU.

The coin issuing ceremony will take place today, 4 October 2012, at 15:00 in the premises of the Riga Technical University, during which the Bank of Latvia will present Leonīds Ribickis, Rector of the Riga Technical University, with the very first symbolic collector coin.

The silver 1-lats coin "Riga Technical University" is legal tender in the Republic of Latvia. The maximum mintage of the coin is limited to 3 000. The coin will be on sale at the Bank of Latvia (the new Cashier's Office at K. Valdemāra Street 1b in Riga). Its price at the Bank of Latvia cashier's offices is 48.00 lats. The description of the coin is enclosed.

Information for editors
Money in form, collector coins are in fact works of art. They are usually made of gold, silver or other precious metals of especially high fineness. As opposed to currency in general circulation, collector coins are usually not intended to be used as a means of payment but as a gift, souvenir or collector's item. Consequently, the price of collector coins is considerably higher than their nominal value.
Since the re-introduction of the lats, the Bank of Latvia has issued 89 collector coins, of which many have won awards at the most prestigious international events of coin design art.