Amongst the first acts of the Meiji government was the establishment of the Imperial Japanese Mint as a constructive step towards modernising Japan's circulating currency. In the early Meiji era, paper currency was initially printed by Dondorf and Naumann in Germany. The European production was inspected and sealed by Banknote Annex Office of the Ministry of Finance. A proposal to construct a banknote manufacturing plant was submitted to Grand Council of State in May, 1874; and construction was approved in December of that same year. A two-story Western red brick building was completed in October 1876.
Over the course of decades, Mint activities have expanded to include the production of orders (decorations), medals of honor and metallic art objects, the analysis and testing of metal ores and minerals, and the fineness certification of precious metal wares (hallmarking).
The Mint became an Incorporated Administrative Agency on April 1, 2003.
1879: This branch of the Mint was set up in the Ministry of Finance building. The primary function of this office was to accept gold and silver to be made into coins which would then be returned to the bearer; however the sub-branch was abolished in 1907.
1929: The branch is established at Kōjimachi-ku. The primary function of this office focused on certifying the fineness certification of precious metal wares.
1939: The branch moved to the present address in Toshima-ku to enable the expansion of its operations.