The United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) recently announced its 2018 stamp program, which will begin with the release of a set of commemorative stamps from the ongoing “Flag” series later this month.
The Flag series will continue on Jan. 12 with the release of two sheets of 16 stamps (four designs a sheet) featuring eight United Nations member states. The $1.15 stamps will include Lesotho, Libya, Mozambique, Romania, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa and Ukraine. A newly designed Flag folder containing these new stamps will also be issued on the same day. Both the stamp sheets and the Flag folder were designed by UNPA’s graphic design team.
Originally launched on Sept. 26, 1980, the Flag series honours United Nations member states. A set of four stamps was issued each year from 1980-89, and due to its popularity, the series was resumed almost a decade later, in 1997. Additional stamps were issued as new member states were admitted to the United Nations or when changes were made to members’ flag designs or official names. These include stamps issued in 1998, 1999, 2001, 2007, 2013, 2014 and 2017.
The UNPA issued a set of stamps as part its “Coin and Flag” series in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015.
“This will be the last issue with 24 stamps,” wrote then officer-in-charge of the UNPA Edward Hynes in a 2015 issue of Fascination, the UNPA’s journal for collectors of U.N. stamps. “For future issues, when there are 8 new member states, a new sheet will be released.”
All of the stamps issued in 2017 and 2018 have had changes to their country’s flag design.
“These symbolic UN Flag stamps are popular among stamp collectors and UN member states,” reads a statement issued by the UNPA. “The UNPA plans to continue its Flag series in the future showing updated flags of member states.”
SPECIAL EVENT SHEETS
In addition to its commemorative and definitive stamp issues, the UNPA also issues upwards of 10 special event sheets each year. Throughout 2018, it will issue eight sheets, beginning with a sheet of 10 $1.15 stamps celebrating the Chinese Lunar Calendar Year of the Dog on Feb. 2.
On May 17, the UNPA will issue a special event mini-sheet of three stamps ($1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70) celebrating NABA Lugano 2018, a national philatelic exhibition taking place in Lugano, Switzerland on May 17-20.
On May 25, Shota Rustaveli’s 12th-century Georgian medieval epic poem A Knight in Panther’s Skin will be honoured on a special event sheet of 10 stamps (€ 0,80).
On May 28, the UNPA will issue a special event mini-sheet of three stamps ($1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70) celebrating Israel 2018, the 70th anniversary celebration of Israeli Independence.
On July 30, a special event sheet of 10 $1.15 stamps will mark World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.
On Sept. 21, a special event mini-sheet of three stamps ($1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70) will mark the Asian International Stamp Exhibition in Macau, China.
On Nov. 23, Italy’s Verona Stamp Show will be honoured with a special event mini-sheet of three stamps ($1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70).
Lastly, on Nov. 28, the UNPA will issue a special event mini-sheet of three stamps ($1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70) marking World Soil Day at the Thailand 2018 World Stamp Exhibition in Bangkok, Thailand.
Other commemorative stamps to be issued by the UNPA in 2018 include three sheets of 16 stamps (four designs a sheet) highlighting endangered species through the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) on March 3.
In addition to the stamps, which have denominations of $1.15, CHF 2,00 and € 1,70, three maximum cards and a collection folder limited-edition silk cover will also be issued.
On April 6, the UNPA will issue a sheet of 20 stamps (50¢, $1.15, CHF 1,00, CHF 2,00, €0,68, €1,70) as well as a souvenir card celebrating World Health Day.
On May 3, a sheet of 20 $2.50 New York stamps will be issued in celebration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly at its third session on Dec. 10, 1948. A limited-edition cover will also be issued.
On May 29, a sheet of 20 65-cent New York stamps will be issued with the theme, “What are You Doing for Peace.”
On June 20, the UNPA will celebrate the United Nations conference on the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space (UNISPACE) with six stamps (sheets of 20) as well as three souvenir sheets.
On July 18, a set of definitive stamps will be issued to mark Nelson Mandela Day on a sheet of 20 stamps. A limited-edition cover will also be issued.
On Aug. 15, the UNPA will continue its World Heritage series with six stamps (sheets of 20) and three prestige booklets.
Lastly, on Oct. 1, the UNPA will celebrate International Music Day with three mini-sheets of 12 stamps each.
The UNPA’s $1.15 stamps are for use from United Nations headquarters in New York City while the CHF 2,00 stamps are for use from the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland and the €1,70 stamps are for use from the Vienna International Center in Vienna, Austria.
For more information, visit unstamps.org.