In 2011 – 12 India imported 55 billion USD worth of gold. It resulted in 50% of the current account deficit for the nation in the same year.
Off-lately GOI has started taking a few steps to curb gold Imports and hence to stabilize the economy.
High gold imports is one of main reasons behind high Current Account Deficit (CAD), which touched a record high of 6.7 per cent of GDP in December quarter of last fiscal. The CAD is likely to be in the range of 5 per cent for the 2012-13 fiscal. As per experts a CAD of 2.5 per cent is sustainable. The high CAD in turn affects rupee value. The rupee hit life-time low of 59.05 against the US dollar. (source)
A few steps taken by GOI till now:
- Hike in import duty of gold. Import duty on gold now stands at 8%.
- Launching inflation index bonds in the budget 13-14.
- Appeal by Finance Minister to stop buying the yellow metal for a year.
- RBI imposing a ban on gold import with bank credits.
Rising imports in 2013:
The import of gold has been rising this year. According to ET imports of gold in the month of April was 132 tonnes while that in May stood at 160 tonnes.
Amount of gold India has imported in the past few years:
In 2012, India imported 864.2 tonne of gold and according to World Gold Council’s initial estimates, shipments will cross 900 tonne in 2103.