India registers 7 per cent decline in gold import
World's largest gold importer, India, witnessed decline in the gold imports by around 7 per cent to US$20.57 billion during the April-November period in FY20 as compared to US$22.16 billion in the same period in FY19, according to the commerce ministry’s data. The decline in precious metal imports has helped in narrowing the country's trade deficit to US$106.84 billion during the eight-month period under review against US$133.74 billion in the same period last year.
Gold import had been recording a negative growth since July this year. However, it grew about 5 per cent to US$ 1.84 billion in October and 6.6 per cent to US$ 2.94 billion in November. India is the largest importer of gold, which mainly caters to the demand of the jewellery industry. In volume terms, the country imports 800-900 tonne of gold, annually.
In order to mitigate the negative impact of gold imports on the trade deficit and current account deficit (CAD), the government had increased the import duty on the metal to 12.5 per cent from 10 per cent in this year's budget. Meanwhile, the country's gold imports dipped around 3 per cent in terms of value to US$32.8 billion in 2018-19.