The coin purses of Israeli citizens are set to become more diversified later this year when a new two-shekel coin is introduced into circulation. "The issue of the new coin will reduce spending on currency issues and will make cash payments more efficient by reducing the number of coins involved in a transaction," the Bank of Israel said Sunday. "As a result, fewer coins will need to be carried in pockets and wallets." The central bank noted that the decision to introduce the new coin into the currency portfolio was based on the results of two surveys conducted Dr. Mina Tzemach of the Central Bank's research department; one that covered a representative sample of the general public and one that covered those who deal in cash, such as bank tellers, salespeople and taxi and bus drivers. Both surveys revealed an overwhelming majority of the public welcomed the introduction of the new coin. "The addition of the NIS 2 coin will make cash payments more efficient, particularly [those done] by big users [of coinage], and save in issuing expenses, bringing down the costs of producing and maintaining cash," according to the Bank of Israel. In choosing the design of the coin, the central bank said several objectives were considered, including easy and clear identification of the coin; a comfortable size of coin for carrying and using; a reduction of spending on currency issues and a blending in appropriately of the new coin between the existing NIS 1 and NIS 5 coins. To assist the blind, the edge of the coin will be marked with notches in four places. The two-shekel coin is silver coated, has a diameter of 2.16 cm., is 2.3mm. thick and weighs 5.7 gms. One side of the coin indicates its value, while the other side shows an image inspired from a coin of Yehohanan, or John Hyrcanus I, and depicts the double cornucopia, a hollow animal's horn that commonly appeared on coins in the Hellenic period and was a symbol of plenty. The Bank of Israel has received the first shipment of the new coins, and after their size, weight and metal composition is approved, they will be put into circulation. Bank representatives would not divulge where the coin was going to be minted, saying only that it was going to be produced outside of the country.