India splurged a record $55.7 billion on gold imports in 2021, buying more than double the previous year’s tonnage as a price drop favoured retail buyers and pent-up demand emerged for weddings that were delayed when the pandemic first hit.
A senior government official who sought anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the media revealed previously undisclosed facts about the world’s second-largest consumer nation’s increasing imports to Reuters. According to an official who follows broad import trends, the gold import bill in 2021 comfortably doubled the $22 billion spent in 2020 and eclipsed the previous high of $53.9 billion set in 2011. In terms of tonnage, India imported 1,050 tonnes of gold in 2021, the highest level in a decade. According to the source, India imported 1,050 tonnes of gold in 2021, the most in a decade and significantly more than the 430 tonnes imported in 2020.
According to Harshad Ajmera, a gold distributor in Kolkata, demand was strong last year because many marriages were postponed from 2020 to 2021 due to the coronavirus outbreak. Gold is a typical wedding present in India and is considered an important portion of the bride’s dowry. A price correction, according to Ajmera, has made gold more affordable for Indian retail buyers.