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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Royal Canadian Mint

This write up of the Canadian Mint explains exactly who the Canadian Mint really are and what they deal in. It is well worth reading about the Canadian Mint before you decide to buy any gold or silver coins from them.

As always, it is a wise and prudent move to do one’s own due diligence before buying gold from any gold dealer or mint.

Who are the Royal Canadian Mint
The British Royal Mint produced all the coins for Canada until 1908 when the Royal Canadian Mint was established. Then, on January 2, 1908 Governor General Earl Grey activated the press to strike a fifty-cent piece, the Dominion's first domestically produced coin. A few moments later, the Governor General’s wife, the Countess Grey, closed the ceremony by striking Canada's first bronze cent.

The Canadian Mint is a for profit corporation wholly owned directly or indirectly by government in lieu of the Crown. Their address is currently in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada with branches and shops in Canada as well.

Per Wikipedia, Ian E. Bennett was appointed President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint on June 12, 2006. Mr. Bennett has also held several previous positions within the Department of Finance including Deputy Minister from November 2004 to June 2006 and previously, he served as Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund representing Canada, Ireland and the Caribbean countries from September 2001 to October 2004.

As President of the Royal Canadian Mint, Two of Mr. Bennett's two most notable accomplishments, since his appointment, have been the introduction of the new Mint Mark on all Canadian Circulation Coins and the partnership with the Vancouver Olympic Committee to produce coins for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games to be held in Vancouver.

More about the Royal Canadian Mint
The Canadian Mint Website, which has been online since May 2001, is in both English and French and uses almost exclusively adobe flash which makes it a tad slower to load up than other mint sites. Those people that do not have or cannot use Adobe Flash will not be able to view the site which is quite elegantly done.

With the creation of the Royal Mint it was soon realized that a Refinery was also needed, to perform the complex work of bringing rough gold up to coinage standards, so the Canadian Mints Refinery was built and completed in 1911. By the end of that year, it had processed 90,000 troy ounces of gold, enough to strike 256,000 gold sovereigns.

Throughout War II, the Refinery produced vast quantities of gold bars with which great Britain paid its debts to other countries.

A new Refinery facility was built in 1936, designed to meet all possible future demand for many years to come.

The Royal Canadian Mint continues to refine gold for mines and central banks throughout the world. Today it stands as one of the industry's largest refiners with a current production capacity of 4.2 million troy ounces per year,

Royal Canadian Mint Products
Canadian gold coins, such as the Maple, are among the most beautiful and popular worldwide. Each gold coin is produced

With the recent gold and silver coins however, Although they bear denominations or face values of $20, $50, $100 or $200, for example, these coins are not really meant for circulation and not really suitable for investment either. They are designed as collectors coins. The gold or silver component of the coins is far in excess of the face value, although tending to be less than 24 karat these days, and, with the high premium or mark up, the coins are more for a hobby collectors market than an investor or even serious numismatist.

Never the less the Royal Canadian Mint's collector gold coins produced, especially the proof issues, are fine and beautiful specimens of gold coins. Each is individually handled and a single coin may be struck up to three times to produce that crisp flawless impression that marks a quality gold coin.

In 1979, Gold Maple Leaf coins we first introduced and were the first ever crafted coins to attain the 9999 level of purity. This is noted in the hallmark the "9999" found on every one of these 24-karat gold coins.

The Silver Maple Leaf bullion coin, was first produced in 1988. And has been a popular with collectors ever since. The Platinum Maple Leaf, minted from 1988 to 1999, is no longer in production. So there is a limit4ed supply of these and they are much in demand on the open market also.

The Mint also refines and produces gold kilo bars, trade bars and one-, five- and ten-ounce gold wafers to the same quality standard. All are struck with their weight, gold purity level and the Royal Canadian Mint hallmark.

All of these plus many other products can be found on their website www.mint.ca.

Royal Canadian Mint Storage Services

The Royal Canadian Mint provides a storage services for Royal Canadian Mint branded precious metals in our vaults. This service is not offered directly to individuals, but through business to business accounts with the Royal Canadian Mint.

The Royal Canadian Mint is a Crown Corporation of the Government of Canada. They are ISO-9001:2000 certified, and are regularly audited to ensure the transparency of the mints business. The Canadian Mint vaults provide a secure facility to store precious metals and this service provided through their selected dealers.

However you cannot buy or sell precious metals directly with the Royal Canadian Mint. You have to go through a retailer or dealer. The Mint does not sell direct to the Public. The same applies to storage. You will have to go through a dealer in order to store metals with the Canadian Mint.

Also you are unable to view stored precious metals at the Canadian Mint’s storage facilities due to security reasons.

Royal Canadian Mint Payment Options
Coins can be bought online at the Canadian Mints website and for this standard credit cards may be used. At the Mint shops of course cash may be used. If you go through the dealers they may have their own payment options and you would have to consult with that dealer to find out what they are.

All prices are in Canadian dollars

The Royal Canadian Mint state that: "want to ensure that you always benefit from the most competitive exchange rates. That is why all items in our catalogues are listed in Canadian dollars only. If you are from the US and paying by credit card, your company will automatically convert the payment to US funds at the time of shipment."

Should you wish to pay by money order or certified check you will need to call the mint and organize payment arrangements.

The United States Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) requires that the U.S.-Based Ultimate Consignee or Foreign-Based Ultimate Consignee, or receiver of the goods, provides a U.S. Social Security Number (SSN) or Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employer identification number for any order equal to or exceeding $2,000 U.S.

In addition, in order to comply with the U.S.A. Customs regulations, the Royal Canadian Mint will now require your SSN or IRS number when you place an order that equals or exceeds $2,000 U.S. in value. This information will be recorded in the U.S.A. Customs Service computer system for customs purposes only.

Royal Canadian Mint Shipping Details
Shipping from the Canadian Mint is better than many other mints,. Whereas with the UK and US mints you will have to wait for weeks, the Canadian mint offers a 10 days from the time t your credit card transaction is approved. This is provided the item is in stock of course.

When it comes to silver products it might be wise to check with the mint first as there has been some short supply of silver with many mints recently.

With Canadian orders, once your order is processed and shipped, delivery usually takes around 1-2 business days if you choose Federal Express, or 3-7 business days if you choose Canada Post.

With US Orders, delivery is expected to take about 1-2 business days if you choose Federal Express, or 7-10 business days if you choose ground mail service.

Royal Canadian Mint Returns & Refunds
If you are not completely satisfied with your purchase, you can return it to the Canadian Mint provided it is in its original packaging and within 30 days and the mint will replace it. If the product is sold out, they will give you a full refund.

To return an item it is well to follow the following steps:
1. Ensure the product is in its original packaging (single coins and coin sets must be returned in their original display cases and outer protective boxes, along with their respective Certificates of Authenticity).
2. Include your packing slip or a short note indicating your name, customer number, complete mailing address and the order number.
3. Indicate if you would prefer a refund or an exchange.
4. Send back by regular mail to: Royal Canadian Mint, PO Box 457, Stn A, Ottawa, ON. K1N 8V5 Canada
Also if you are returning a defective product, you should include a copy of the postage receipt and they will then refund your return parcel post costs at the regular mail rate, up to a maximum of $12.99 CDN.

If you want to cancel your order you should call the mint as soon as possible. If you are quick enough it can be cancelled prior to leaving the warehouse. Once it has progressed past a certain point in the order/dispatch process it is not possible to cancel the order so one does need to be quick in this regard.

Last Word on the Royal Canadian Mint

Naturally such coins are more for collectors than for investment. Investment in gold and silver is best done using gold or silver rounds and bullion bars. in addition one can invest in gold and silver by owning it and not having the hassle of storage and transport issues, by going to goldmoney.com and opening an account there.

If you have bought any gold coins, silver coins, gold bullion or silver bullion from the www.mint.ca, please feel free to leave feedback on the quality of service and products you found, including any www.mint.ca online complaints and special attention or service given by www.mint.ca

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