Q1 Gold imports nearly halve to $3.9 billion
The sliding prices of the precious metal in both global and domestic markets are seen as a contributory factor for the plunge. Gold imports stood at $7.51 billion in April-June 2015. The inbound shipments contracted for a fifth consecutive month in June by 38.5 per cent to $1.20 billion, according to the data by the Commerce Ministry.
The contraction in imports helped narrow trade deficit to $8.11 billion last month as against $10.82 billion in June 2015. India is one of the largest gold importers in the world and imports mainly take care of demand of jewellery industry. India’s CAD narrowed to 1.3 per cent of GDP in the third quarter of 2015-16 as against 1.5 per cent in the same period of the previous year, mainly on account of a lower trade deficit.
Meanwhile, the government has announced launch of fourth tranche of sovereign gold bond scheme from today in a bid to check the demand for physical gold. It had netted 3.1 tonnes of idle household and temple gold under the monetisation scheme since its launch in November. Silver imports too dipped to $249.39 million in June as against $342.37 million in the same month last year.