New Delhi: Gold imports, which have a bearing on the current account deficit, declined 47.42 per cent to USD 9.28 billion during April-October due to fall in demand in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to data from the Commerce Ministry.
Imports of the yellow metal stood at USD 17.64 billion in the corresponding period of 2019-20.
The imports, however, recorded a growth of about 36 per cent in October.
Silver imports during the period too dipped 64.65 per cent to USD 742 million.
The decline in gold and silver imports has helped in narrowing the country’s trade deficit, difference between imports and exports, to USD 32.16 billion during April-October 2020-21 as against USD 100.67 billion in the year-ago period.
India is the largest importer of gold, which mainly caters to demand of jewellery industry. In volume terms, the country imports 800-900 tonne of gold annually.
Gems and jewellery exports declined by about 49.5 per cent to USD 11.61 billion in April-October 2020.