NEW DELHI: According to data from the Commerce Ministry, gold imports, which have a bearing on the current account deficit, jumped to about USD 24 billion during April-September 2021 due to higher demand in the country.
Imports of the precious metal were at USD 6.8 billion in the corresponding period last year, the data indicated. Gold imports during September this year too rose to USD 5.11 billion as against USD 601.4 million in the same month last year. On the other hand, silver imports dipped by 15.5% to USD 619.3 million during April-September this fiscal.
However, during September, these imports jumped to USD 552.33 million as against USD 9.23 million in September 2020. A significant jump in the gold imports has led to a record widening of the country's trade deficit, the difference between imports and exports, to USD 22.6 billion during September this fiscal as against USD 2.96 billion in the year-ago period. India is the largest importer of gold, which mainly caters to the demand of the jewellery industry. In volume terms, the country imports 800-900 tonnes of gold annually.