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Archives Quarter IV, 2020


This page is the archived News Page from the October to December 2020 period. All contents have been dispatched in the respective stamp description pages. However there may still remain open questions. Any complementary information is welcome. As soon as an information is archived, the text will not be changed anymore. So if additional information are linked to the below, this will be displayed as a new heading in the currently open News page.

 


December 29, 2020
Most recent information obtained during this last period of the year is decribed below:

The most recent news comes from Jaap Sarelse (The Netherlands) who had access to stamps issued by Brazil in the frame of the joint issue with Poland (stamp issued on November 19, 2020). Unfortunately, these Brazilian stamps are personalized stamps and despite the fact they bear the 100th anniversary logo of the relationship, this series cannot be considered as joint. The stamps will be reported in the catalogue but under the heading [N], non-accepted.

On November 25, 2020, Singapore issued as planned the joint stamps celebrating the 50th anniversary of relationship with Mongolia in form of two stamps (sheets of 10) and a souvenir sheet (140x75 mm). Mongolia stamps seem to be ready but due to transportation issues (and Covid) will become available only early 2021.

By scrolling through the recently issued stamps from Singapore, a post card celebrating the 30th anniversary of relationship with PR China was discovered. This card was issued on December 8, 2020. Up to now, no information was found relative to an equivalent Chinese product.

Enzo Cafaro (Italy) was able to provide the date of issue of stamps having released 'International day of Family Remittance" stamps since Bulgaria issued the first one. Those include: Central Africa (July 24), Guinea Bissau (September 29), Liberia (October 26), Mozambique (September 15), Sao Tome (August 31) and Togo (October 8). Unfortunately, some of these stamps have been created opportunistically by central producers without any formal committment from the countries' postal administrations. This issue will be reported in the catalogue with a warning concerning the real participation by the country to the original joint issue by separating official partners such as Bulgaria from 'me-too's' produced centrally and privately such as Guinea Bissau or Liberia. The exact classification will be presented in the catalogue when all stamps will be available and their exact origin confirmed.

In the same vein, stamps celebrating through similar souvenir sheets and identical stamps the 75th anniversary of the VE day with portraits of major actors and head of states, must be considered as part of an omnibus series and not as a true joint issue. These stamps have been produced privately and centrally without real involvement of the postal administrations of the different countries. Here are some examples of these souvenir sheets and the list of countries involved so far includes: Antigua and Barbuda, Gambia, Grenada, Guyana, Marshall, Nevis, Tuvalu, and apparently all issued September 30, 2020.

Additionally, we received several information from Cesar Ittmann (the Netherlands), Kenneth Sequeira (Dubai), Enzo Cafaro (Italy), Dominique Josse (France) about joint issues to be released during the year 2021. Thanks to all of them. These data have been included in the 'Issues to come' Chapter.


December 14, 2020
Over the past three weeks a series of information became available. Thanks to all of the collectors who have provided these data:

In the French philatelic journal "L'Echo de la Timbrologie" of December 2020, n° 1956 p48-51, an article written originally in Italian by Danilo Bogoni reports the full history of the Ivory Coast - Vatican joint issue from September 10, 2020 in which the name of the country was simply 'forgotten' on the Ivory Coast stamp. Additional information that has not been reported so far here, can be summarized as follow:
- The 500F Ivory Coast stamp was officially presented to Pope Francis on September 9, 2020. The official date of issue became the next day, September 10, 2020.
- Very quickly, the Ivory stamp which is a simple copy of the Vatican state stamp with a different denomination, was identified as a stamp containing a major error, namely the country name was missing. It is quite astonishing that only when on sale, philatelists discovered such a gross mistake. Actually, Great Britain is the only worldwide country authorized to print stamps without country name (as being the country having invented the stamp)
- Both Vatican State and Ivory Coast stamps became available from the Vatican Philatelic Office until discovery of the mistake (and complaints) and sale was rapidly suspended, but resumed on September 28, 2020. It was anyway too late to correct the printing error- The Ivory Coast stamp was officially presented in the country by the president on September 21, 2020. As a consequence this issue should be considered as a Concerted issue, but as Ivory Coast stamps became available as early as September 10, 2020 from the Vatican philatelic office, we will keep this stamp considered as a Twin issue. Additionally, available FDCs from Ivory Coast are anyway dated from September 10, 2020
- The real interest of Ivory Coast for this joint issue was driven by political reasons. The idea was to use the image of the Ivory Coast President Alassane Dramane Ouattara next to the Pope to promote good relationship just before presidential elections in Ivory Coast (which took place on October 31, 2020, and were eventually won by Ouattara with 95% ballots in his favor). Some Ivory Coast politicians even claimed that this stamp represented the first Vatican-involved joint issue in which a head of state of a country was pictured together with the Pope. This statement is true, but actually only in the case of a joint issue, as Vatican stamps representing heads of state together with a pope had been produced earlier at several occasions.
- On top of the 500F value stamp (210,000 units printed among which 10,000 printed in miniature sheets of 10 provided to the Vatican State for sale to philatelists), Ivory Coast issued also later stamps at denomination 100F (100,000 units) and 250F (100,000 units). Except for the 10,000 500F stamps provided to Vatican, all other stamps were printed in panes of 25 stamps [5x5]. Additionally, Ivory Coast produced 1,000 souvenir sheets with a denomination of 2000 F, and 1,000 'Epreuves de luxe' from each stamp as well as 1,000 booklets of 10 stamps
- Vatican State has mentionned that they will consider only the 500F value as part of the joint issue, but collectors will themselves define which stamps belong to this joint issue, knowing that mixed FDCs with all three Ivory Coast stamps and dated from September 10, 2020 do exist.
In summary, this uncommon joint issue will be reported in the catalogue as a true twin issue (philatelists are not responsible for the hiccups/misunderstandings between postal administrations) and all items will be described under this heading.

Adam Paish (GB) was the first to report about the new Cuba - Vietnam stamps released on December 3, 2020. Unfortunately, even if this issue is claimed as joint, and has been produced jointly by Vietnamese and Cuban artists, so far we have only seen the Vietnam stamps. Celebrating sixty years of diplomatic relations between the two countries, it illustrates World Heritage sites in Havana (the fort of Santo Domingo de Atarés) and Hanoi (the main gate of the Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long).

George Adi (USA) found an older joint issue not reported so far: Palau and Papua New Guinea issued respectively on December 8 and December 21, 2019 a common stamp dedicated to Dorje Chang Buddha III, religious leader. By looking closer, a third country, namely Tuvalu issued a stamp with the same design on August 7, 2020. Unfortunately, this survey led to the discovery of additionally almost 30 of different design stamps related to this topic and issued in (and not by) countries including Antigua and Barbuda (November 17, 2020), Chad, Central African Republic (April 25, 2020), Djibouti (June 12, 2020), Dominica (November 18, 2020), Gambia (September 27, 2019), Grenada (September 3, 2019), Grenada Grenadines (August 28, 2020), Guinea (November 20, 2020), Guinea Bissau (September 29, 2020), Guyana (September 27, 2019), Liberia (June 28, 2020), Marshall (August 14, 2019), Mozambique, Niger (June 10, 2020), Nigeria (June 29, 2020), Saint Vincent and Grenadines (November 15, 2020), Sierra Leone (March 1, 2020), Tajikistan (November 22, 2020) and Ukraine (August 1, 2019). All stamps seem to have been issued by IGPC, while other stamps were simple personalized stamps (Australia - June 1, 2020, Austria - June 30, 2019, Israel - March 10, 2019, Liechtenstein - September 1, 2019, Moldova - January 1, 2020, New Zealand - November 1, 2019, Poland - December 1, 2019, Portugal - April 1, 2020, Spain - June 30, 2020). Some of the stamps are based on similar pictures.
In other words, this topic was initiated by a dealer and these stamps cannot be considered as joint. Due to the identical design of three of them, they will be reported in the catalogue, but collecting as joint is not recommended.

Stamps from Kyrgyzstan and Ukraine dedicated to jewelry were finally released on December 9, 2020. The first images were provided by Don Birschel (USA).


Enzo Cafaro (Italy) provided the first images of the stamps from South Korea and Russia to be released on December 15, 2020.

Milanofil is now officially postponed to October 8-9, 2021. In the meantime Kyrgyzstan released its ActNow souvenir sheet. Issue date is December 15, 2020.

On the Kyrgyzstan web site, the joint souvenir sheets to be issued by this country and Turkey are already depicted. The date of issue will be December 21, 2020 and the topic is the Bishkek Main Mosque of Imam al Sarakhsi.

Wayne Chen (USA) reported a souvenir sheet (143x210 mm) recently issued by France (November 4, 2020) which reproduces with a new denomination and a single color the French stamp released jointly with PR China in 2014 [C20140127]. The words "France - China" were even kept on this stamp used in the frame of the production of an item gathering copies of all French stamps depicting the Paris Notre Dame Cathedral that burned on April 15, 2019. Of course this item is not part of any joint issue, but it was interesting to illustrate this point.

Among the surprising information, Jaap Sarelse (the Netherlands) saw for the first time for sale on eBay the Angola stamp dedicated to Lusitanian writers from the Lubrapex joint issue 2012 [P20121009]. This item was eventually sold at a value of US$ 306 !!!


November 23, 2020
This is a sad information I have to share here, that we just learned about a couple of days ago: our long-year friend Charles Feingersh passed away last Summer at age of 97. We have lost a great collector of joint issues and FDCs. A lot of information related to mixed joint issue FDCs have been completed in the catalogue based on his knowledge. We have been told that he really stopped taking care of his stamp collection by beginning of this year. I had personnally the chance to meet him four times always in the US (Washington DC, New York, Miami) over the past 15 years and we had really extensive discussions and very interesting exchanges about joint issues. Most of us long time collectors will remember him and miss him.


November 22, 2020
The joint issue between Italy and the Vatican state dedicated to the 9th centenary of the Cathedral of Volterra was issued on November 10, 2020 postponed from initially scheduled May 20, 2020. Addtionally, an unexpected second stamp dedicated to the Basilica of Aquilegia was also released at the same date. Surprisingly, the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM) joined Italy and the Vatican State to this issue.

On the same day of November 10, 2020, Vatican joined Austria to celebrate Christmas (the light of Bethlehem) with identical stamps. However, the Austrian souvenir sheet became available only on November 20, 2020. Due to this more than one week time difference, we will have to consider this issue as Concerted [C] and not true Twin [T]. Vatican issued two stamps in panes of 10, a souvenir sheet with both stamps se-tenant as well as a booklet containing two pairs of se-tenant stamps (all information from Italy, SMOM and Vatican provided by Enzo Cafaro, Italy).

The Russia - Turkey issue was released on November 3, 2020 and is celebrating the 100th anniversary of establishment of relationship between both countries. The stamps depict the Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul and the Moscow Cathedral Mosque.

On November 5, 2020, the joint issue involving French Andorra and Spanish Andorra was finally issued (initially scheduled June 11, 2020). This issue announces the candidature of the country to the UNESCO World Heritage. Both administrations issued a tryptich with the Castel of Foix, the House of the Valleys and the Cathedral of Deu d'Urgeil, with the central part being the common stamp with denomination and the two others being labels.

Wayne Chen (USA) was able to provide ahead the first images from the China - Ethiopia joint issue to be released on November 24, 2020. I wonder how long it will take until the Ethiopian stamp images will be available.

Information about the 75th anniversary of the Arab League stamps released since March 22, 2020, official day of issue at least for the first countries, were provided by Kenneth Sequeira (Dubai). So far the following countries have joined the issue: Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, United Arab Emirates. A Tunisia stamp issued recently is in fact celebrating the Arab Postal Union Day and even if related to the Arab League, this issue has nothing to do with this anniversary. We are still missing a lot of information about this issue and the sanitary situation does not help. The Arab League includes on top of the above listed six countries Algeria, Bahrein, Comoros, Djibouti, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, i.e. 22 countries (if one integrates also Syria which is suspended). All these countries are entitled to participate to this issue. Any help here is welcome.
Among the additional information collected so far, note that non-perforated Egypt stamps are available, UAE issued stamps in miniature sheets of 4 stamps [4x1], while Lebanon issued stamps in panes of 20 [5x4] from which small folders of 6 stamps [3x2] were available for sale.


October 25, 2020
Kenneth Sequeira (Dubai) provided over the past week a series of information regarding the different philatelic programs for 2021:
- Ukraine and Liechtenstein plan to release in 2021 (exact date not provided) common stamps at the occasion of the 140th birthday of Ivan Myasoyedov, the author of the first postage stamps of the Principality of Liechtenstein 
- Ukraine announces also a joint issue with Lithuania and Poland to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Battle of Khotyn
- In its philatelic program for 2021, Ukraine lists also a joint issue with Albania (topic undisclosed) and another with Israel (Nobel Prize winners, Shmuel Joseph Agnon). No exact dates for all these issues are provided.
- France confirms a joint issue with Japan to be released during 2021
- Finally, for 2020, the Mongolia - Singapore joint issue is officially reprogrammed for November 25, 2020 (new Singapore philatelic program)

Regarding Mongolia, Robert Schrijvers (Mongolia), could confirm that the Mongolia stamps expected to be issued jointly with Slovakia (Slovakian stamp already issued on October 2, 2020) are now programmed for December 2020.

The Poland - Vatican joint stamps were issued on October 16, 2020 (100th birthday of John Paul II) (Information provided by Grzegorz Omelanczuk, Poland).

Unexpected Hungary - Singapore joint stamps were released on October 22, 2020. This issue is showing bridges (Information provided first by Kenneth Sequeira, Dubai).

The Slovakia - Malta joint stamps were issued on October 24, 2020 (Information provided first by Don Birschel, USA)

Regarding the Moldova – Romania issue, we got the following message https://www.moldovastamps.org/info-services-suspended2.asp and the stamps disappeared from the Romanian philatelic program for 2020.

Nedjmeddine Boudaren (Algeria) was able to provide pictiures of the Family remittance stamps issued by Sao Tome and Principe , Togo and Mozambique. Exact dates of issue remain unknown so far.


October 12, 2020
ActNow stamps: additional information obtained recently confirms that the two miniature sheets of ActNow stamps produced under names Liberia and Sierra Leone (actually Stamperija) have been produced without the consent of UN and Italy, the two countries at the origin of this joint issue that was supposed to be released at the occasion of the (cancelled/postponed) Milanofil 2020 exhibition. As rule number one to define a joint issue is based on a proven collaboration between at least two postal entities, in this case we have to exclude Liberia and Sierra Leone from this joint issue. These countries joint the series in a kind of opportunistic way. In the catalogue, these two countries will not be listed in the heading and stamps will not be reported in details. These two miniature sheets will simply be mentioned in the footnote with the above explanation, to avoid recurring question about the existence of these products. We do not recommend to buy these two products in the frame of the joint issue collection.

Vatican - Ivory Coast: Benjamin Bush (France) was able to provide all pictures of the products released by Ivory Coast as part of the joint issue with the Vatican State on September 10, 2020. These products, all printed by Cartor, were not entirely ready by time of release of the Vatican State stamp and at that time only the 500F value was shown. At the same time, it was discovered that the Ivory Coast stamp was missing the name of the country and looked like a simple translation in French of the Vatican stamp, highlighting the word "Cité du Vatican" instead of "République de Côte d'Ivoire". A reprint with correction was expected, but finally the stamps were all released without any change, avoiding speculation.
The full package consists of three perforated stamps (funilly with a frame showing a simulated perforation, so the stamp looking like having two perforations all around), with denominations 100F, 250F and 500F. These stamps we released in panes of 25 stamps [5x5]. The stamp with value 500F was also released as a miniature sheet of 10 stamps [2x5], actually the sole product known so far and since the issue date of September 10, 2020. These three stamps were also available as imperforate (probably in panes of 25 as well). These three stamps can be found in non-perforated souvenir sheets with a single stamp (actually De luxe proofs). The country issued also a souvenir sheet with a perforated stamp with denomination 2000F. Finally, a FDC with all three perforated stamps is also available. So far we have not heard about mixed FDC covers.

Andri Prasetya Wibowo from Indonesia was the first to share the information about the very recent joint issue released between Colombia and Indonesia. These stamps were released as identical souvenir sheets of four different stamps showing birds and local handcrafts and commemorating the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relationship. According to Andri, Colombia has announced their stamp release on September 15, 2020 (with release ceremonial on September 16, 2020), while Indonesia started to sell its stamps from October 9, 2020 only. However, the official FDC cancellation for Indonesia is September 15, 2020, which will become the actual date of issue for this series in the catalogue.


October 5, 2020
On September 30, 2020, Lebanon and Mexico issued two similar stamps celebrating the 75th anniversary of their relationship. These stamps, initially scheduled for August 26, 2020, were delayed probably as a consequence of the terrible blast that happened on August 5, 2020 in Beirut and the pandemic situation that continues affecting traveling. At the time of writing, information from Mexico is only available as a movie reporting the first day official ceremony that took place on September 30, 2020, in Lebanon. Both countries issued the same stamps, one in Spanish, one in Arabic language, differentiated only through the denomination and the postal administration symbol (This information and pictures were provided by George Adi, USA).

Italy and the Vatican State issued a common stamp on September 28, 2020 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Vatican Public Security Inspectorate. Both stamps are available as miniature sheets of 10 self-adhesive stamps.

The Ivory-Coast - Vatican joint issue from September 10, 2020, generated some uncertainties. The Ivory Coast stamps remain still difficult to obtain directly from the Ivory Coast postal administration, and information from this country is scarce. One Ivory Coast stamp (500F) became available from the Vatican post for a short period. They stopped providing the stamp when a doubt was put on a difference that could have been considered as a major mistake, if not a bogus: the design of the Ivory Coast stamp is fully identical to the Vatican stamp, modified only at the level of the denomination. Indeed, the stamp bears the name "Cité du Vatican" in French where the name of the country "Côte d'Ivoire" was expected. However, the stamp from Ivory Coast and mixed FDCs with this stamp (cancelled in Vatican State) became available again. Vatican will restart the selling and cancelling this week.
Additional information (Benjamin Busch, France) tells that for Ivory Coast three different stamps should be available, with denominations 100F, 250F and 500F, in panes of 25 stamps, miniature sheets of 10 and one souvenir sheet with one single stamp (denomination 2000F), as perforated and imperforated. All this still needs to be confirmed.

The ActNow series is as much complicated as the previous series and the COVID situation did not help for smooth releases of new issues. A lot of information is still missing. The Belarus stamp has finally been issued on September 8, 2020. Azerbaijan issued also a sheet of 12 stamps on September 8, 2020. We also just learned that stamps of Sierra Leone and Liberia are now available (apparently issued on June 12, 2020, information provided by Don Birschel, USA and Chen Wenchao, PR China). Despite the fact that the stamps of these two countries are produced by Stamperija (i.e. difficult to know if the postal administration has really approved the issue), we have to consider these stamps as part of the issue. Unfortunately it is a pity to have to take in account countries which will use philatelists to make money, in particular when considering that these sheets contain 10 different stamps, while most of the other countries (except UN) have agree to issue a single stamp only.

On October 2, 2020, Slovakia issued a stamp jointly with Mongolia to commemorate the 70th anniversary of their relationship. Mongolian stamps have not been seen so far (information provided by Cesar Ittmann, the Netherlands)

Australia and Mauritius issued philatelic material at the occasion of the 50 years of diplomatic relationship on September 25, 2020. Australia issued a postal paid envelope while Mauritius issued a stamp. These items were discovered by Chen Wenchao, PR China.

Dominique Josse (France) informed us that the French Austral and Antarctic Territories (FAAT/TAAF) will issue joint stamps together with Portugal in the course of the year 2021. Cesar Ittmann found also for 2021 two joint issues involving Russia: on February 3, 2021, a cooperative issue of Communication Boards of member countries of the Regional Commonwealth in the Field of Communications (probably involving all former CIS countries) and on March 25, 2021, with Austria, with topic Bilateral Year of literature and theater.

Nedjmeddine Boudaren (Algeria) informed us that Togo issued the missed joint issues: "African philately hub", Covid-19 and Family Remittance at the same date of June 16, 2020 (this needs to be confirmed as stamps have not been seen so far). Apparently Sao Tomé and Principe and Mozambique have also issued stamps with topic "Remittance". We will report on those as soon as images become available.

Coronavirus stamps issued by Liberia, Niger, Sao Tomé and Principe, Chad, Guinea-Bissau in identical panes of 16 different stamps are not considered as joint (exemple provided below).

Same situation for COVID stamps issued in panes with pairs of stamps referring to the word "UNITED" and issued by Tadjikistan and Togo (June 16, 2020): Not a joint issue (illustration below).


July 1, 2020
The News from the period July to September 2020 have been archived.


All previous information reported in this section is to be found in the News Archives.

 

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