Year of the Ox commemorative coins now available

Year of the Ox commemorative coins are now available for Songjiang residents for exchange.

Banks in Shanghai received their portion of 8.34 million New Year commemorative coins recently.

As early as the morning of January 29, Songjiang residents, wearing face masks, queued up in front of one of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China’s local branches on Zhongshan No. 2 Road, to exchange for the Year of the Ox coins.

In previous years, people could choose either online or offline booking to purchase the coins. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the offline booking events have been canceled.

“We check people’s health codes and take their temperatures before they enter the venue. For elderly people who don’t have a smartphone, we note down their names and identity card number,” said Yuan Ying, chief operating officer of ICBC Songjiang.

“The duration for coin purchase will last for seven days. During the period, banks will offer the coin exchange service. So residents are advised to visit the banks in off-peak hours to avoid rush,” Yuan added.

The Year of the Ox commemorative coins are made from copper alloy and their face value is 10 yuan (US$1.55) each. The front of the coin is printed with Chinese characters including “People’s Bank of China” and “Ten Yuan,” whereas the back is printed with traditional Chinese paper cutting patterns and the figure of an ox. The duration for coin purchase will last through February 4. During the period, citizens can trade for the coins at ICBC, Bank of Communications, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and Huaxia Bank’s Songjiang branches.

“I collect commemorative coins every year. And the Year of the Ox coins will hopefully bless me and my life and career will flourish this year,” said Lu Weida, a Songjiang resident who was among the first to purchase the coins.

“Both my elder sister and my husband were born in the Year of the Ox. So the commemorative coins as gifts for them will have significant meaning,” said a resident surnamed Zhang.