Govt eases norms for import of gold alloy
The Government, which is easing curbs on gold imports, will soon relax conditions for import of gold dore by refiners. This is in response to a sharp fall in gold imports over the past few months.
Importers of gold dore — an alloy of gold and silver used for extracting pure gold — will now be allowed to fulfil their export obligation over a period of three months, instead of carrying it out strictly on the basis of every lot imported, a Commerce Department official told Business Line.
“The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) will come up with the notification soon,” the official said. Gold importers have to compulsorily ensure that at least 20 per cent of imported gold is made available for exports. They have to keep the required quantity in customs warehouses and are allowed to import fresh quantities only after 75 per cent of the gold kept in the warehouses is exported.
“Importers of gold dore will now have the flexibility to supply gold in the domestic market and set aside some for exports within a longer period of three months. This will be helpful especially because domestic demand for gold is high in certain months when it may be difficult to spare a part of it for exports,” the official added.
The relaxation will also allow importers to ship in fresh lots even if imports from the previous lot could not be exported as long as the export numbers are maintained within a quarter. Gold imports declined 80.49 per cent to $1.05 billion in November 2013 compared with November 2012. The current account deficit, which was a high 4.9 per cent of GDP in the first quarter of the fiscal, narrowed to 1.2 per cent of GDP in the second quarter.
The Government, which increased import duties on gold and put in place a number of restrictions, is now gradually in the process of easing the measures. Earlier, in September, the DGFT had made it easier for gold importers to get their 20 per cent gold consignment under customs bond released against export of gold jewellery or articles of gold.
Source: Hindu business line