Proposal to allow banks to buy gold from local refiners discussed

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MUMBAI: The department of economic affairs at a meeting with RBI and other officials in Delhi Friday discussed a proposal that would allow banks to buy gold from local refiners accredited by BIS and NABL, a person present at the meeting said.

“This is at proposal stage where RBI would allow banks to buy gold from local refiners instead of only LBMA-accredited refiners like MMTC -Pamp at present,” the person said.

But for the proposal to become operational an India Good Delivery standard for gold and silver bars has to exist on the lines of LBMA accredited bars, he added. The standard is in final stages of being prepared by a technical committee and once approved would function under the commerce ministry.

The ministry has already sponsored Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council and the Domestic Council for gems and jewellery will function under it. The quality standard for gold is also proposed to be regulated by the commerce ministry.

Once the standard is in vogue, and RBI approval is in place banks can purchase gold bars from assigned and accredited collection and purity testing centres. The bars will be made from jewellery deposited by resident Indians at the centres. This will reduce dependence on imports.

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