Whole Country is Red breaks China stamp world record

A mint condition 1968 The Whole Country is Red has set the new record for a single Chinese stamp at auction.

The unissued error stamp, which celebrates the "success" of the cultural revolution, sold for $1.15m at a May 21 auction in Beijing.

In doing so it matched the price set by a 1968 Mao's Inscription to Japanese Worker Friends corner block of four in 2011, now the joint holder of the auction record for a piece of Chinese philately.

China stamp world record
The new world record holder

One of just eight specimens ever produced, it is among five in mint condition. The stamp was hastily withdrawn in 1968 because it failed to show Taiwan as part of China.

Guo Xueguang, the manager of the auction house, told the China Daily newspaper that this specimen is the best of the eight, with its bright colour a particularly prominent feature.

The sale is confirmation of the desire Chinese collectors have for the stamp. Along with xiao yipian hong and quanguo shengli specimens, they form the pinnacle of Chinese stamp collectibles, the newspaper reports.

The Chinese stamp market is booming.

The value of 100 of the most collectible Chinese postage stamp sets is up 46% pa since March 2009, figures from the China 100 Stamp Index reveal.

The $2 Dr Sun Yat Sen inverted centre postage stamp set a new record for its type in March, when it sold for $311,000 in Hong Kong, 20.5% above its estimate.

Meanwhile the current world record for 1980 Chinese Monkey stamps stands at $192,521, an increase of 186% in 18 months from the previous record.

We have the most valuable item of Hong Kong philately available for you to buy. We're not moving our price on this, despite the market growth in China. Capitalise on our generosity today.

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