This is the third time the euro-area members have decided to collectively issue a commemorative coin. The first was in 2007, when the finance ministers of the then thirteen countries agreed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome with a single commemorative coin and the second time was in 2009 when sixteen countries celebrated 10 years of the EMU.
Citizens of all Member States of the euro area were invited to submit designs via a dedicated website during a three-week period in May 2011. A professional jury selected five from among the more than 800 designs submitted. Euro-area citizens and residents thereafter selected the winning design by public web-voting in June 2011. The winning design gathered 34% of the 34 611 total votes.
The Euro-sign in the centre of the coin shows that the Euro has become an element of particular importance in Europe as well as all over the world as the Euro evolved to a global player in the international monetary system in the last 10 years. The design elements around the Euro-symbol on the coin express the importance of the Euro to the people, to the financial world (ECB tower), to trading (ships), to industry (factories), to the energy sector and research and development (wind power stations). It was created by Helmut Andexlinger who is a professional designer at the Austrian Mint.
The artist's initials, AH, appear below the image of the ECB tower. The name of the issuing country in the national language(s) appears at the top, while the years 2002-2012 appear at the bottom.
Issuing volume: 96 million coins
Official Journal: C 17 20.01.2012