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Imports of Gold-Silver Alloy May Almost Double: Refiner

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Panaji: India's imports of dore, a semi-pure alloy of gold and silver, are rising fast and could nearly double this fiscal year, the head of the country's top gold refiner said on Saturday.

A lower duty of 8.24 per cent on dore, versus the overall tax of 10.30 per cent on the import of refined gold, is pushing refineries to buy more.

Some new refineries have also added to demand.

"In the last few months, dore imports are going up," Rajesh Khosla, managing director of MMTC-PAMP India, said on the sidelines of the International Gold Convention in Panaji, capital of India's western resort state of Goa.

"With the current trend, its share in total imports could rise to 15 to 20 per cent."

India, whose gold consumption is rivalled only by China, imported 940.5 tonnes of gold in the last fiscal year that ended on March 31, according World Gold Council data. Dore's share was about 11 percent of that.

In a further boost to dore imports, the central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, and the finance ministry are considering scrapping bulk import licences of the commodity, officials with direct knowledge of the discussions told Reuters last month.

© Thomson Reuters 2015

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