Seeking to push exports, the commerce ministry has asked the finance ministry to ease restrictions on import of gold, imposed by RBI. In a letter to economic affairs secretary Arvind Mayaram, commerce secretary SR Rao has asked him to “look into the matter (gold imports by exporters) and issue necessary instructions to RBI for removal of the anomaly.
“The department is repeatedly receiving representations from stakeholders in the matter and our exports are suffering,” Rao said in the letter.
In order to check a rising current account deficit (CAD), RBI had in August imposed curbs on import of gold and also laid down various pre-conditions for inward shipment of the precious metal.
Rao also pointed out that as the “Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) does not prohibit exporting first and then importing (for replenishment), the prohibition imputed by the Department of revenue based on the RBI circular does not appear to be in order”.
Gems and jewellery sector, which is a major consumer of imported gold, account for about 15% of India’a total exports.