The popularity of collectable coins has prompted a Bulgarian expert to visit New Zealand this week to commission a collection.
Valentina Grigorova-Gencheva, the head of gold and numismatics - the science of coins - at Bulgaria's First Investment Bank, is working with the Auckland-based bullion and coin maker, New Zealand Mint.
Last year, the Auckland-based manufacturer sold $US15 million worth of coins to Eastern Europe and the Balkans, where it is tradition to give coins as gifts on important occasions.
Mrs Grigorova-Gencheva says coins are a rapidly growing market in Bulgaria, where increasing wealth and consumerism, as well as the economic crisis, have made them a popular gift and safe haven investment.
Mrs Grigorova-Gencheva says the First Investment Bank has imported more than 20,000 coins made by New Zealand Mint over the last three years.