Swiss COVID-19 semipostal; two Coronavirus stamps from Vietnam
By Denise McCarty
Swiss Post has issued a semipostal stamp to aid people affected by the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak. According to the April 6 press release announcing the semipostal, “the proceeds will go to people who need help now.”
Called COVID-19 Solidarity, the stamp is denominated 1 franc with a surtax of 5fr, expressed in centimes as “100+500” on the stamp. However, it is sold in a pane of 10 for 50fr, not 60fr.
Swiss Post said: “Those 50 francs will go to people who are in urgent need of assistance due to the coronavirus pandemic. All proceeds will be split fifty-fifty between Swiss Solidarity and the Swiss Red Cross. Swiss Post is also covering the actual face value of the one-franc stamp. In other words: the purchaser donates 50 francs to Swiss Solidarity and the Swiss Red Cross, and in return Swiss Post gives them 10 stamps.”
Founded in 1946, Swiss Solidarity is a nonprofit charity that uses funds to support “humanitarian and social projects that meet the needs of those affected by disasters and humanitarian crises both in Switzerland and abroad,” according to its website.
Swiss Post reports that the semipostal was designed in six days by several graphic artists working from their home offices “joining forces, yet keeping their distance.”
Their design serves as “visual symbol of solidarity during the coronavirus epidemic,” according to Swiss Post.
“With Switzerland at the center, the rotated cross reveals a shining globe,” Swiss Post said in its press release, adding that “Solidarity and social cohesion are core values at the moment.”
While Swiss Post is accepting orders through its website, the orders cannot be delivered abroad as of April 8. Swiss Post said the orders will be retained until shipping abroad is guaranteed again.
Orders can be delivered in Switzerland and its neighboring countries (Germany, France, Italy, Liechtenstein and Austria), but still may be delayed.
More Coronavirus stamps
In other news about stamps related to the pandemic, Vietnam issued a set of two stamps March 31 to raise people’s awareness of the coronavirus and to promote responsibility nationwide.
Called “Join Hands in COVID-19 Prevention and Control,” the stamps show “symbolic images based on electron micrographs,” according to Vietnam Post’s announcement of the stamps.
Pham Trung Ha of Vietnam Post designed the stamps. The 15,000-dong stamp shows two Vietnamese doctors in the foreground and a fist in the background. According to Vietnam Post, the doctors are researchers working on treatments and a vaccine to fight the coronavirus.
The 4,000d stamp depicts medical personnel and other frontline workers, including military and security professionals.
The announcement from Vietnam Post mentioned stamps from three other countries related to the coronavirus. Linn’s has reported on one of these: the stamp issued March 17 by Iran.
The other two countries, China and Sri Lanka, were scheduled to issue coronavirus-related stamps in April, but Linn’s has not been able to confirm if these stamps have been issued or if they have been postponed.
Sri Lanka Post has announced on its website and Facebook page that “Due to Covid-19 pandemic situation [the] department of posts has suspended all operations until further notice.”
Linn’s also has received information about a set of two stamps from Indonesia with a planned release date of April 7.
Collectors interested in the two stamps from Vietnam may want to contact new-issue dealers.
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