New €2 commemorative coin

A Europe-wide online poll to select a design for a commemorative €2 coin has chosen a design by Greek sculptor George Stamatopoulos. His design symbolises the currency as the latest step in a long history of trade within and outside Europe. The winning design will be on 90 million coins minted and put into circulation next year to mark the 10th anniversary of the completion of economic and monetary union (EMU).

The winning design, created by the sculptor of the Central Bank of Greece, George Stamatopoulos, symbolizes that the euro is the final step in the long history of trade, from prehistoric barter (evoked by a intentionally primitive drawing) to the Economic and Monetary Union .

Commemorative coins bearing this design will be issued in all member states of the euro area from January 2009.

The winning design got 40% of the 141,000 votes cast between January, 31st and February, 22nd. All citizens and residents of the European Union were able to choose among five designs listed by the directors of European coin issuing authorities. In total, 141,675 people participated in the vote, and the winner received a plea 41.4 %of the votes.

The new coin will be the second commemorative coin to be issued across the whole euro zone. The first, also a €2 coin, marked the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome in 2007. Each member of the 15-member euro zone can issue one commemorative €2 coin a year. So far nine countries have done so.