The Panda gold coin series were launched in 1982 by China Mint in honor of the endangered Chinese giant pandas. The 99.9% fine gold Panda bullion coin is minted in proof-like finish.
Although these coins are legal tender and are issued by the People’s Bank of China, the Panda gold coins are uncirculated. Panda proof sets were issued from 1986 to 1995. The Chinese Panda coins have a silver series, too.
From the year 1982 up to 2000, the Chinese panda coins have a face value of 5 Yuan (1/20 oz), 10 Yuan (1/10 oz), 25 Yuan (1/4 oz), 50 Yuan (1/2 oz), and 100 Yuan (1 oz).
But the face values changed in 2001 along with the introduction of the new denominations in the Panda gold coin series, as shown on the table:
|Troy ounces||New face value|
|1,000 oz /1 kilo||10, 000 Yuan|
|5 oz||2, 000 Yuan|
|1 oz||500 Yuan|
|1/10 oz||50 Yuan|
|1/20 oz||25 Yuan|
Each year, the obverse design of the Panda gold coins changes. However, China Mint decided in 2001 to have a constant Panda coin design for the years to come. Thus, 2002 release Panda gold bullion coins were identical with the prior annual issue.
Panda coin collectors and those who buy Panda gold coins for investment reacted against the new policy. As a result, the China Mint resumed minting different designs of the Panda gold coins in 2003.
The obverse side of the Chinese Panda coin also bears the coin’s size, gold purity, face value, and the phrase “Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo” which means People’s Republic of China.
The reverse depicts the Hall of Prayer for Abundant Harvests in Beijing’s famous Temple of Heaven, and the mint year of the Panda gold coin.
The China Mint encloses each Panda gold coin in an individual plastic holder to protect its finish and coin grade.
The Chinese gold Pandas are produced in various branches of the China Mint in Beijing, Shenzhen, Shanghai, and other provinces. Consequently, there were annual issues with minor variations. The 1996 release of the Panda gold coins had different font sizes of the mint year.
The Chinese panda gold coins are officially distributed by the China Gold Coin Corporation (CGCC) who appropriates the Panda coins to gold coin dealers all around the world.