India official says withdrawal of gold import curbs will be calibrated

Reuters Posted online: Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 0000 hrs
Mumbai : Curbs on gold imports in India will not be withdrawn immediately, but will be done in a calibrated manner, the country's Economic Affairs Secretary Arvind Mayaram said on Friday.

India, the second biggest consumer of gold after China, last year imposed a record 10 percent import duty on the metal and said a fifth of all shipments should be re-exported as finished product to help narrow its current account deficit.

India's current account deficit, final figures for which are expected to come in the first week of June, is likely to fall to less than $40 billion for the fiscal year ending March 31 from its record $88 billion in the previous year.

"We cannot declare victory for sure ... and if the curbs have to be eased, they will certainly be eased in a calibrated manner," Mayaram said.

He said the country's economic growth was expected at 5.5 percent in the current fiscal year that began on April 1 and 6 percent in 2015/16.