Indian government to maintain gold import tax
Victoria Hewitt-Marsh, News Editor
25 Jul 2014, 10:50 a.m.
Indian Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, has confirmed the government has no plans to reduce the extremely unpopular gold import tax.
Gold imported into India is subject to a 15% import tax and 20% of all gold imported must be exported before any further imports can be made. The restrictions were imposed in 2013 in an attempt to reduce the Indian current account deficit and protect the value of the Indian rupee.
The taxes have been extremely unpopular as gold is central to Indian culture, with Indians buying gold as a store of value and for gifts at weddings and religious festivals. Prior to being elected the Bharatiya Janata Party had promised to remove the tax if elected.
Prior to the introduction of the taxes India was the world’s largest consumer of gold.