Hellas (Greece)

Monetary System


Circulating Coins
1 Drachma = 100 Lepta

Anthemion flower

Drachma(s): 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100
On January 1, 1999, the European Monetary Union introduced the euro as a common currency to be used by the financial institutions of member countries; Three years later, on 1 January 2002, the euro became the sole currency for everyday transactions with the member countries

Greece achieved her independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1829. During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, it gradually added neighboring islands and territories, most with Greek-speaking populations.In World War II, Greece was first invaded by Italy (1940) and subsequently occupied by Germany (1941-44); fighting endured in a protracted civil war between royalist supporters of the king and communist rebels. Following the latter's defeat in 1949, Greece was able to join NATO in 1952. A military dictatorship, which in 1967 suspended many political liberties and forced the king to flee the country, lasted seven years. The 1974 democratic elections and a referendum created a parliamentary republic and abolished the monarchy. Greece joined the European Community or EC in 1981 (which became the EU in 1992); it became the 12th member of the euro zone in 2001.

Borders Albania 282 km, Bulgaria 494 km, Turkey 206 km, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 246 km
Economy Population: 10,647,529 (July 2004 est.)
GDP per capita: $ 20060.99

Greece boasts of one of the world's oldest currencies, the Drachma. When production of these coins ceased at the end of 2001, this currency had already circulated for some 2500 years. The Banknote Printing Works of the Bank of Greece. Today, the country specializes in striking coins with themes reflecting the rich ancient and modern Hellenic history, art and culture, because the international coin market indicates preference of collectors for these coins.

IETA's History

The Banknote Printing Works of the Bank of Greece (IETA), was set up by a decision of the Bank's General Council dated 7 June 1938 and its original purpose was to print banknotes (paper bills) for the Bank, as well as government securities. The building complex was completed in 1941, and the first printing machinery was bought and installed there that same year. Operations effectively started after the end of World War II, with the production of the 1947 1,000 drachma banknote (Series IV) and of cheques and other securities for the Bank and the Greek government.

Since 1971, when the Ministry of Finance entrusted the Bank of Greece with the production of legal tender and commemorative coins, the IETA facilities have also housed the National Mint. The National Mint was organised in line with Western European standards and was equipped with state-of-the-art machinery for the manufacturing of coin dies and the striking of legal tender coins, commemorative and collectors' coins, medals, etc. The production of coins effectively started in 1972.

Today, IETA is a pioneering printing house, delivering products which, apart from their outstanding aesthetic value, meet high security standards and offer maximum protection against counterfeiting is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery, and its production processes are in line with the industry's best practices at the European level. It is staffed by highly qualified and experienced professionals (engineers, technicians and artists) and conducts strict quality controls all along the production chain, from raw materials to packaged products, conforming with relevant international standards.

2002 Brilliant Uncirculated set (8 coins) obverse (37Kb) and reverse (39Kb),
2000 Brilliant Uncirculated set (obverse (37Kb) and reverse (39Kb),
1993 Proof set (7 coins) obverse (84Kb) and reverse (82Kb),
1992 Brilliant Uncirculated set (7 coins) obverse (30Kb) and reverse (24Kb),
1978 Brilliant Uncirculated set (8 coins) obverse (29Kb) and reverse (29Kb),
1973A Brilliant Uncirculated set (8 coins) obverse (82Kb) and reverse (29Kb),
1973B Brilliant Uncirculated set (8 coins) obverse (69Kb) and reverse (75Kb),
1965 Proof set (8 coins) obverse (82Kb) and reverse (29Kb),
1926 First Greek Republican Coins (7 coins) obverse (25Kb) and reverse (23Kb).

For further information, contact the Hellenic Mint, Messogion Ave., 341 Halandri, Athens, Hellas, 152 31 - Telephone 6721034