Somalia Gold Elephant Coins are a stunning tribute to the world’s largest land mammal and its majesty. These bullion gold coins are part of the African Wildlife series and have a gold purity of 99.99 percent. They were first produced by another African country, Zambia, in 1999, but Somalia took over the series in 2004. These coins are now available in a variety of sizes and denominations in gold and silver.

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins Background and History

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins were first produced in 2004, when the war-torn African nation from the horn of East Africa took over production from Zambia. This is one of the few bullion coins on the market that changes its design every year. This helps to explain why the Somalia Gold Elephant Coins continue to be a popular investment and collector item due to their high gold purity and beautiful design. The obverse side of the gold coin always depicts one or more elephants in their natural habitat. Since 2004, the reverse side of the coins has featured the Somalia national seal. Prior to 2004, that side displayed the national seal of the issuing country, Zambia.

The Bavarian State Mint produces these Somalia Gold Elephant Coins every year. By reputation, this is Munich’s oldest firm. During the reign of Heinrich dem Löwen, the facility began striking coins in 1158. Locals have long referred to the mint as the Das Bayerische Hauptmünzamt. It has a well-deserved centuries-old reputation for producing high-quality collectible coins, medals, and seals.

The bullion history of the Gold Elephant is both fascinating and contentious at times. The issue was created for Zambia by the Bavarian State Mint. According to the mint, it received legal authorization in 2004 to transfer the series’ legend to the Republic of Somalia. Several experts have expressed their scepticism about the mint’s claim. This is due to the fact that Somalia has never accepted the Gold Elephant coin as legal tender within its borders. Furthermore, the pieces have yet to be distributed by Somalia’s Central Bank. It is true that much of the confusion about who is behind these coins can be attributed to the East African nation’s ongoing unrest and political turmoil. Even as Somalia struggles to establish a parliamentary-based federal republic, civil war has raged here.

This helps to explain why the Bavarian State Mint does not have the necessary documentation to prove that it is authorized to mint this coin on behalf of Somalia each year. While these issues may be concerning to gold collectors and investors, the fact that they are still highly pure gold coins created by one of the world’s longest established and highest quality official government entity mints does not change. Indeed, some analysts argue that the lack of clarity surrounding Somalia’s gold and silver coins makes them both more interesting and valuable.

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins Physical Characteristics

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins are struck and guaranteed for purity and content by the highly reputable, German-based Bavarian State Mint, which has been producing money for the entirely autonomous Principality of Bavaria for centuries. This mint is still one of Germany’s four main mints today. It is owned by the Free State of Bavaria, as it has been since the 12th century, when Bavarian local princes ruling in Munich established it.

Coin Design

The front side of a coin is referred to as the “obverse.” The obverse design on these coins changes with each year of production. The obverse of the 2017 Somalia Gold Elephant Coins depicts an enormous elephant standing in knee-length grass on the African Serengeti savanna. In the striking image, it is in the process of emitting a deep and powerful bellow. A traditional Somalian hut is in the background, surrounded by a small cluster of coconut palm trees. At the top of the image, the sun is setting. The inscriptions on the coin include “AFRICAN WILDLIFE” at the top and “ELEPHANT” and “1 oz Au 999.9” in the bottom half of the obverse.

The back side of coins is referred to as the “reverse” by coin collectors all over the world. The reverse of the Somalia Gold Elephant Coins depicts the country’s distinctive national coat of arms. This emblem consists of a single star emblazoned on a background with horizontal lines based on the nation’s heraldic shield. Leopards stand on either side of the shield and support it. The leopards themselves stand on two outward pointing crossed lances framed by two crossing palm frond leaves and covered by a ribbon. On the outside of each leopard’s flank, the mintage year is divided in half. The coin’s much-debated face value is adorning the bottom of the coin in the shape of an arc. The inscription “SOMALI REPUBLIC” is in an upward facing arc on the top of the coin.


These Somalia Gold Elephant coins come available in a variety of sizes. These include one kilogram, five ounces, one ounce, one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, one-tenth ounce, one-twenty fifth, one-fiftieth ounce, and half gram sizes. The specifications of the most heavily produced and most commonly purchased one ounce size are:

  • Mass:  31.1 grams
  • Diameter: 39 mm
  • Thickness:  1.9 mm
  • Content: 1 troy oz. gold
  • Purity: 99.99% gold

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins Pricing

Somalia Gold Elephant Coins are produced with a face value of a thousand Somalia Shillings. The question of whether they are truly legal tender in the Republic of Somalia remains unanswered. They have never been legal tender in Somalia, according to the Central Bank of Somalia. This is where the perplexity of having one foreign national mint produce a coin for another country’s completely independent central bank arises. Whether the coins have a face value or not, they contain a nearly pure troy ounce of gold, the value of which far exceeds the nominal legal tender value in any case. This intrinsic value explains why gold coins are so valuable as a store of value. Even if the issuing government and central bank fail or abandon their fiscal responsibilities and obligations, the precious metal content of the coins stands alone.

The intrinsic value of gold determines the market price of all Somalia Gold Elephant Coins in an investor’s portfolio. Because of the controversy surrounding their legal tender status, these coins trade at a significant premium over gold prices, resulting in high collector demand for the relatively scarce issues. The market value of these coins fluctuates on a daily basis based on the value of the gold contained within them. You can easily find today’s live gold prices by visiting our homepage.

Can IRA Accounts Contain Somalia Gold Elephant Coins?

If you are thinking about investing your retirement funds in Somalia Gold Elephant Coins, you should know whether the IRS allows them to be included in an IRA retirement account. The question is one that is decided solely by the American taxing authority. They determine the purity and collectibility standards that allow or disallow such coins to be used in self-directed IRAs.

To open such an account, you must first fund a precious metals IRA account with at least $5,000 in approved gold and silver bullion coins and bars. After that, you can always add more precious metals purchases and shipments by depositing funds of at least $1,000 or more. If you already have a traditional type of IRA account, you can easily transfer it to a precious metals IRA vehicle. When your bullion arrives, your IRA administrator will transfer it to a vault that has been officially approved by the Internal Revenue Service for IRA bullion storage within the United States. These reputable third-party depositories bear the responsibility of both maintaining and safeguarding your valuable gold and silver holdings. They will not release your holdings unless and until you issue a sell order, which is relayed to them on your behalf by your precious metals IRA administrator. The coins must never be in your personal possession, even for a single day, or they will be ineligible for inclusion in an IRA account.

Regardless of how intriguing and contentious these Somalia Gold Elephant Coins are, the IRS forbids you from including them in your IRA account. The reason for this is due to their failure to meet the collectibility standard. While the coins easily exceed the IRS standard of at least.995 purity with their impressive.9999 purity, they command an exorbitant premium over spot gold prices due to their apparent rarity and consistent investor- and collector-based demand. Even if these striking tributes to the vanishing African elephant aren’t part of your IRA, they’re excellent choices for other types of investment and retirement vehicles you might have. You can buy them from a variety of precious metals dealers in the United States and around the world.