When people ask Paul Fraser Collectibles why they should invest in collectibles, one of the major factors we often quote is the sheer strength of the worldwide collectibles markets.
There are an estimated 200 million serious collectors worldwide. This figure is set to grow, and the passion of these collectors is underpinning prices.
Crucial to this growth are the BRIC nations - Brazil, Russia, India and China. The nations' combined population is set to double in the next 40 years, including an addition of one or two billion people to their middle classes.
A greater middle class population across the BRIC nations means more disposable income, and more participation in worldwide collectibles auctions.
The growing interest of the BRIC, and also Middle Eastern nations, is becoming increasingly evident year-on-year. Whether it's Russian oligarchs building art collections, Middle Eastern Emirs expressing interest in buying auction houses, or new Indian World Record prices.
This is also true of philately. There are around 18 million collectors in China alone. And the hobby is also popular in Russia...
You can expect a number of Russian philatelist to participate in an upcoming Australian auction of rare stamps this Thursday, February 2. Its highlights include rare pieces of Indian, Russian and Iraqi philately.
Among the lots for sale is this folio of used Russia-Soviet Union stamps dating between 1921-99. The collection is billed as "nearly complete" and is spread across 12 books.
The collection's principle highlights are to Consular Airmail Official stamps dating to 1922, 12Mk and 24Mk. Both are tied and cancelled, and used and unpriced. Such specimens are increasingly rare. These carry a catalogue value of €4,000-plus.
Other highlights include a 1922 Children Philately set of stamps including both perforated and imperforated 1k specimens. Their catalogue value is €1,800.
In all, this is a very valuable collection boasting many scarce items. The whole folio has a catalogue price of A$36,000 or more (equivalent to €26,000), and should attract global interest.