Sri Lanka's Central Bank will issue a new series of lightweight coins to reduce minting costs, a state-run newspaper reported Thursday. The move to create new five, two and one rupee coins, along with 50 and 25 cents, will save the government 600 million rupees (US$6 million; Ђ5 million), the Daily News said.
The new coins will be plated with brass, nickel and copper instead of copper and zinc used in the old coins, the report said.
The size and color of the five and two rupee coins will remain unchanged, but the new one rupee, 50 and 25 cent coins will be smaller than the existing coins, it said.
The Daily News reported that 50 million new five rupee coins have already been minted, but it did not say when those or any of the other coins would come into circulation. It said the other coins would also remain in circulation. Calls to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for comment were not answered Thursday, a public holiday, reports the AP. I.L.