KATHMANDU: Nepal is facing
scarcity of gold
for the past few months as the local traders have been using the yellow metal
instead of Indian currency, which is also scarce in the market, to import
goods from India.
According to Tej Ratna Shakya, president of
Nepal Gold and Silver Traders Association, Nepalese importers have been using
gold to make payments for goods being imported from India for the last three
months, leading to shortage of the yellow metal despite recent hike in gold
In the local market here, one tola
of gold, equals 11.664
grams, costs 60,400 Nepalese rupees.
Till the end of last financial year, the daily demand
for gold in the market was 15 kilos, which has increased three-fold after the
traders started taking gold to India through illegal channel to make payments
against purchase of Indian goods, he said.
Nepal is highly dependent on India for import of
foreign goods and it is estimated that three-fourth of Nepalese imports comes
Nowadays, the demand for gold has reached 50 kilos per
day, which is too difficult to meet as the Nepal Rastra
Bank, the central
bank of Nepal, only allows import of 15 kilos of gold daily.
This has adversely affected the business of those
making gold ornaments, according to economic observers.
"We have not been able to take orders for making
gold ornaments due to the shortage of raw gold in the market," Shakya said.