India has witnessed a massive 176% jump in gold imports in August. From $738.7 million a year ago to $2.03 billion in the last month, India’s high bullion growth has ensured that the country would not be keen to cut import duties anytime soon.
The latest data comes barely a week before the government’s planned announcement of a new five year foreign trade policy that analysts maintain is likely to include sops for domestic value added products, new rules for special economic zones, which include those in the gems and jewellery sector, and a probable review of free trade agreements that India had signed with various countries and groups of nations.
Trade Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has noted that the government would be keen to continue with its policy that helped narrow India’s trade deficit, in an indication that status quo would continue on India’s import duties for some more time.
The government had increased customs duty on gold to 10% and banned the import of gold coins and medallions, while the apex bank linked imports of the metal to exports.