The Royal Mint has released a gold bullion bar depicting the Kaaba in Makkah as it participates in a fundraising drive for the victims of last month's earthquake in Turkey and Syria.
The 20g bar, which costs £1,119.10, has been released before Ramadan, which starts later this month.
“Drawing on more than 1,100 years of minting expertise, we have applied our expert craftsmanship to create a beautiful representation of the Kaaba, the holiest place on earth for many Muslims,” said Andrew Dickey, director of precious metals at the Royal Mint.
“This Kaaba gold bar, contained within beautiful Islamic-themed protective packaging, makes a special gift, allowing our customers to give the precious gift of gold during Eid Al Fitr, or as a secure investment with its 999.9g of fine gold containment.”
As part of the launch, the Royal Mint donated three of the bars to be auctioned at charity events raising money for victims of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria last month.
The quake, which levelled thousands of homes, killed almost 53,000 people.
“Ramadan is a time of giving, so we’re proud to have supported Islamic Relief, a leading Muslim charity, through the donation of Kaaba gold bars at three UK events, raising upwards of £9,000,” said Mr Dickey.
Abdul-Azim Ahmed, who worked with the Royal Mint on the launch, said it was an “honour” to collaborate on the design.
“Covered by the kiswah, a black cloth with gold decoration, the building’s outline is unmistakable, and it has now been minted in gold, the precious metal prized for millennia,” he said.
“The Royal Mint is one of Britain's oldest institutions, and this historic gold bullion depicting the Kaaba is an acknowledgement and celebration of Britain's growing and long-standing Muslim community.
“The design will be immediately recognisable by Muslims globally.”
The Kaaba is a cube-shaped structure at the centre of Masjid Al Haram, the world’s largest mosque.
Considered to be the most sacred site in Islam, the Kaaba is draped in a covering that is orientated so the corners correspond to the points of the compass.