1972 - Current


The obverse of the coin carries the Armorial Ensign of Sri Lanka. The reverse of the coin the value in numerals and in Sinhala, Tamil and English below and year of issue at the bottom with SRI LANKA in Sinhala on top.

KM137 One Cent aluminum coin1975-1994
KM138 Two Cent aluminum coin1975-1978
KM139 Five Cent nickel-brasscoin1975
KM139a Five Cent aluminum coin1978-1991
KM140 Ten Cent nickel-brasscoin1975
KM140a Ten Cent aluminum coin1978-1991
KM141 TwentyFive Cent copper-nickelcoin1975-1994
KM141a TwentyFive Cent nickel-plated Steelcoin1996-2004
KM170 TwentyFive Cent copper-plated Steelcoin2005-2009 Smaller
KM135 Fifty Cent copper-nickelcoin1972-1994
KM135a Fifty Cent nickel-plated Steelcoin1996-2004
KM171 Fifty Cent copper-plated Steelcoin2005-2009 Smaller
KM136 One Rupee copper-nickelcoin1972-1994
KM136a One Rupee nickel-plated Steelcoin1996-2004
KM172 One Rupee brass-plated Steelcoin2005-2013 Smaller
KM172a One Rupee brass-plated Steelcoin2013 Finland
KM172b One Rupee Stainless Steelcoin2016 Kremnica
KM147 Two Rupee copper-nickel coin1984-2004
KM147a Two Rupee nickel-plated Steel coin2005-2011
KM147b Two Rupee Stainless Steel coin2013 Koninklijke
KM147c Two Rupee Stainless Steel coin2016 Kremnica
KM148 Five Rupee Nickel-Brasscoin1984-2004
KM148a Five Rupee Brass-plated Steelcoin2005-2013 Royal Mint
KM148a Five Rupee Stainless Steelcoin2016 Kremnica
KM181 Ten Rupee nickel-plated Steelcoin2009-2011
KM181a Ten Rupee Stainless Steelcoin2013 Kremnica

The 2017-18 order which is still to be issued appears to have made all the coins smaller to save on cost of minting the coins.

In 2016 the Rs1 and Rs5 were stripped of their Brass plating and edge lettering in the Rs5 coin and the order was given to Kremnica in Slovakia. Mean average Weights were slightly different at 3.93 grams and 7.5 grams according to Reply to my RTI 0006/17. That made all Sri Lanka coins in circulation Stainless Steel.

Till 2012 all of the coins were Minted at the Royal Mint at Llantrisant (near Cardiff in Wales, UK) except for the 1996 Fifty cent coin minted at the Royal Canadian Mint. Since the 2013 tender was awarded the Rs10 coin has been minted at Mincovna Kremnica of the Slovak Republic, the Rs2 coin in Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt in Utrecht. Finally the Rs1 and Rs5 was awarded to The Mint of Finland Ltd.. Dated 2013, they were put into circulation between 2013 August and 2014 June, without any formal announcement. After taking delivery of just 3.6 Million Rs1 coins minted in Finland the remainder of 2013 order was reawarded to Royal Mint.

In 2005 the Two and five rupee coins also changed to plated Steel coins. See Article for more details on this issue of lighter and smaller coins.

Since 1996 the TwentyFive Cent, Fifty Cent and One Rupee coins were issued in Nickel Plated Steel which in appearance and weight looks identical to the Cupro Nickel issues they replaced. The older CN one rupee coins are 1.85 MM and newer nickel plated steel are 1.95 MM or 5% thicker on average in the center, and 1.95 MM and 2.14 MM or 10% thicker along the rim coin. The Weight of both were within +/- 1% of the legal 7.13 grams
They are attracted by magnets but please note they are NOT Magnetic as claimed by some Internet dealers. IF they were magnetic they should stick to each other which they don't.

According to the production numbers given in the Royal Mint annual report for SriLanka(Ceylon) Proof coins minted in 1974/5 (6850) and 1975/6 (7157) had the old design and the 1971 date. No Proof coins with the 1975 date were minted in years 1975/6 or 1976/7. The Krause listing of 1431 Proofs of 1975 date was reported as an error of unknown origin and removed in 2007 edition

In the mid 1970's large quantities of nickel brass five and ten cents coins were being melted due to the scarcity of brass. Unable to arrest the out flow the Central Bank selected a cheaper alloy. From 1978 the 5-cents and 10-cents coins were minted in Aluminium. Since 1995 even the Aluminium has more than the face value of these coins nolonger seen in circulation or issued by the Central Bank.

With this change in Armorial Ensigns the Central Bank approved of the Royal Mint striking 20,000 sets in proof condition with the date 1978 for sale to collectors. It included an additional one rupee coin with the effigy of J. R. Jayewardene. the first executive president who took office in 1978 (Sallay 1986).
The set of 8 coins embedded in dark brown hard board with SRI LANKA printed in gold lettering on top of reverse side is encased in clear plastic and enclosed in a light brown soft-board envelope printed in gold with the Central Bank of Ceylon Emblem above which the text on right. Double sided information card of same material and color enclosed
Proof Coinage of


Marketed mostly abroad few sets were sold by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka from which I obtained a set in the early 1990's. It sells frequently on internet auctions for under $15.

It is amusing that the Central Bank Emblem used included the English Text Central Bank of Ceylon while the 1971 Ceylon Proof Set only had an Emblem with "Sri Lanka Central Bank" in Sinhala. The Central Bank changed it's English name from Ceylon to Sri Lanka only in 1986 as reflected in Currency notes and the Rs 5 coin

Listed as PS1 in Krause Catalog it also seems illogical IMHO to reset the numbering of Patterns and Proof Sets with the change of Country name while they don't do that for the coins.

In late 1999 the Central Bank of Sri Lanka packaged a set of the currently circulating 10 coins from one cent to Ten rupee with a total face value of Rs 18.93 and sold them as a set to collectors for Rs 150/- (US$2). Embedded in a triangular hardboard panel with a blue paper background it is attached to two more triangular panels of hardboard covered with white plastic so that it can be folded into a Pyramid with each side of base 15 cm and height 20 cm. The two extra outer panels have a tourist map and photograph of the new Central Bank Building and on the inside a mosaic of tourist attractions (Dalada Maligawa, RuwanweliSeya, Ruins, Satmahal Pasada, Sigiriya and two of the Fresco Maidens), and a general history of coins of Sri Lanka. The folder is encased in an plastic envelope which includes an additional sheet with coin Specifications including Denomination, Metal Weight, Diameter, Shape and Edge.
1-cent (1994); 2-cent (1978); 5-cent (1991); 10-cent (1991); 25-cent (1996); 50-cent (1996); 1-rupee (1996); 2-rupee (1996); 5-rupee Cricket World Cup (1999); and 10-rupee Independence 50th Anniversary bi-metal (1998). The nice BU coins appear with a mottled surface caused by the PVC laminate(?) which when peeled showed the sticky gum on the inner surface over the coins !!! I wonder who got the contract to do the cheap packaging.