The British Gold Britannia coin was unveiled in 1987 in the crown gold (22-carat gold format). For every 22 parts gold, the British Gold Britannia coin comprised two parts copper. This gave it a 0.9167 millesimal fineness or a 91.67 percent gold content. Its 22-carat fineness remained for the period between 1990 and 2012 only for the copper to be substituted with silver. The British Royal Mint is the exclusive minter of the British Gold Britannia and it is one of the most renowned and respected mints in the global gold market.
In 2013, the Royal Mint released a 99.99% pure gold version of the British Gold Britannia coin. Before 2013, the Britannia’s standard weight was 34.05g inclusive of the alloy. However, its standard weight decreased to 31.1035g following the release of the new Britannia gold coin. From 2013, the Britannia’s diameter was 38.61 millimeters and its thickness ranged between 1.58 and 1.65 millimeters with reeded markings on its edge.
The 2013 Britannia’s obverse face features Queen Elizabeth II’s effigy, with surrounding inscription, “ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA F.D.” and “100 POUNDS”. Right at the base of the effigy’s neck are the initials, “IRB”, which are the initials of the gold Britannia coin’s sculptor, Ian Rank-Broadley. Its reverse contains the inscription, “ONE OUNCE FINE GOLD BRITANNIA 2013” surrounding a female Britannia (the female personification of the British Isles) standing on a rock by the sea wearing long robes and a Corinthian helmet holding a trident on her right hand and an olive branch resting on a shield on the left denoting protection and peace.
In the UK, the Britannia with one-ounce Gold is legal tender with a £100 face value. Thus, for all UK investors, the capital gains from the Britannia are completely tax exempt. Additionally, the Britannia satisfies all the conditions that are required of European Union investment gold. Consequently, this means that the Britannia can be bought VAT-free across the entire EU. For investors, the British Royal Mint produces the Gold Britannia in bullion coin form. For collectors, it produces proof coin form. Fractional Britannia gold coins in denominations of a tenth, quarter and half of an ounce with respective face values of £10, £25, and £50 are available.