The Government of the British Indian Ocean Territory has issued (July 27) a new coin highlighting the immense biodiversity of this region. From its indigenous land and airborne creatures to the extraordinary sea inhabitants, the British Indian Ocean Territory is rich and plentiful with an array of diverse and exceptional nature.
The British Indian Ocean Territory is situated in the Indian Ocean, between Tanzania and Indonesia, and consists of the seven atolls of the Chagos Archipelago, including more than 55 individual islands. Chagos itself is an archipelago situated in over 250,000 square miles of the world’s cleanest seas. The largest and most southerly island is Diego Garcia, which is home to a population of just over 4,200 people and houses one of one of the largest U.S. overseas naval and military bases. Chagos has the largest coral atoll on earth and over 60,000 square kilometers of shallow limestone reef and associated habitats, as well as about 300 seamounts and abyssal habitats. It is by far the greatest area of marine biodiversity overseen by Britain.
Chagos archipelago also contains some of the world’s healthiest coral reefs and the cleanest sea water, sediments, and marine life tested so far in the world. It is a reservoir of biodiversity for an over-exploited ocean. This chain of islands is the southernmost archipelago of the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge, a long submarine mountain range in the Indian Ocean. The Chagos forms a terrestrial eco-region together with the Maldives and the Lakshadweep.
The archipelago of Chagos features prominently on the reverse side this new coin. Struck by the Pobjoy Mint UK on behalf of the Government of the British Indian Ocean Territory, the reverse design features an outline of Diego Garcia Island in the centre of the coin with some of the native wildlife also featured. A turtle, a booby bird, and angelfish can be seen alongside some coral reef at the bottom.
The obverse includes an effigy of HM Queen Elizabeth II first seen in 2015, which is designed and used exclusively by the Pobjoy Mint. The year of issue, 2016, also appears.
|£2||Cupro-nickel||28.2 Grams||38.6 mm.||BU||unlimited|
|£2||.925 silver||28.2 Grams||38.6 mm.||Proof||10,000 pieces|
The cupro-nickel coin is shipped in a unique Pobjoy-Mint-branded blue presentation pouch. The Proof silver coins are encapsulated in an acrylic capsule for protection and housed in a stunning red box with a certificate of authenticity. The Proof sterling silver pieces are also struck four times to create a flawless finish.
For more information on this and other coins issued from the Government of the British Indian Ocean Territory, please visit the Web site of the Pobjoy Mint, exclusive distributors of British Indian Territory Ocean Territory coins. International sales will be dispatched where applicable.