"Consumers in India showed continued strong appetite for gold, with recent government measures to curb demand having had little impact on the quarters figures. Consumer demand was 310 tonnes, up 71 per cent on last year," the World Gold Council (WGC) said in its latest report. According to WGC India Managing Director Somasundaram PR, "Gold demand in Q2 was best in the last ten years." The fall in the gold price last April resulted in an increase in jewellery demand by more than 50 per cent to 188 tonnes in Q2 this year from 124 tonnes in the year-ago period, while bar and coin consumption reached a record high at 122 tonnes from 56.5 tonnes in the review period, he said. The introduction of restrictions on payment terms for gold imports in May and an increased import duty in early June to 8 per cent created uncertainty in the market but had a "limited impact on end-user demand," he added.
India, the world's biggest buyer of gold, has been trying to curb imports of the yellow metal, which is the second biggest imported item after crude oil. On August 13, the government raised import duty on gold for a third time in eight months to 10 per cent from 8 per cent.