Gold import curbs leading to smuggling: Anand Sharma

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Gold import curbs leading to smuggling: Anand Sharma
According to media reports, India's Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma reckons that gold import restrictions imposed by the government to reduce the current account deficit, have given rise to smuggling activities.

Sharma stressed on the need for a review of the curbs."I feel for a review. I am not in favour of making it so difficult that it leads to increase in smuggling," Sharma said to the PTI, the report by the PTI said.

The government this week reportedly allowed some private sector banks to import gold within limit, raising speculation that the centre is on the way to easing import restrictions on the precious metal that were placed last year to curb the trade deficit, given that gold is India's second major imported item after crude oil.

India had stepped up import restrictions on gold in 2013 including raising of import duty on the yellow metal and the 80/20 rule which requires 20 per cent of inbound gold shipments to be re-exported as gold jewellery.

India's imports of gold and silver tumbled by 71.4 per cent to USD 1.63 billion in February 2014 over the same month a year ago amid restrictions on imports of the bullion.

Dion Global Solutions Ltd.

Story first published: Monday, March 24, 2014, 9:10 [IST]
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