NEW DELHI (Commodity Online): India’s state-owned trading company—Minerals and Metals Trading Corporation (MMTC)—said on Thursday that it would import 350 tons of Gold and 1,200 tons of Silver in 2011-12 as demand for the precious metals is rising fast.
"We plan to 350 tons of gold and 1,200 tons of silver in the 2011-12 fiscal as the domestic demand for these metals are fast rising," MMTC Marketing Director Ved Prakash told reporters.
India is one of the largest importers and consumers of gold and silver in the world. As the domestic production of these precious metals is negligible compared to their rising consumption, India has been importing hundreds of tons of gold and silver every year.
Prakash said that import of gold by MMTC in the current fiscal is expected to increase by more than 40 per cent with the yellow metal fast emerging as a safer investment option.
"We are stepping up import of Gold this fiscal due to rising demand for the nobel metal. Also, its value as a safe option, in the current volatile market, is rising,” he said.
The company almost doubled its import of gold at 45 tonnes during the April-June quarter this year compared to the same period last year, he added. He said besides gold, the demand for Silver is rising as
it gives better returns.
Silver prices have been touching new peak in India thanks to robust demand amid short supply in the global market.
Majority of silver in India is used in the production of ornamental items like jewellery, utensils and gift articles. Every year, India buys more than 4,000 tonnes of silver and over 960 tonnes of gold.