Gold imports dipped by 48.49 per cent to USD 1.96 billion in December on account of cash crunch in the system. Gold imports were worth USD 3.80 billion in December last year, the official data released today showed. Imports of the precious metal were on a decline since February this year till September. It recorded positive growth in October and November. A decline in gold imports pushed down the trade deficit to USD 10.36 billion during the month under review as against USD 11.5 billion in December 2015.
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The contraction in gold imports will help further moderate the current account deficit (CAD).Silver imports too dipped by 81.55 per cent to USD 87 million in December as against USD 472 million in the same month last year.The country’s total official gold imports declined to 60 tonnes in April-July of this fiscal, much lower than 250 tonnes in the year-ago period. India, the world’s second biggest gold consumer after China, imported 650 tonnes of the precious metal in 2015-16.