India will look into easing gold import curbs-Chidambaram

NEW DELHI Mon Feb 17, 2014 6:19am EST

NEW DELHI Feb 17 (Reuters) - India will look into relaxing gold imports curbs, but won't let its current account deficit (CAD) balloon, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said on Monday.

"There are pros and cons (on easing gold import curbs), we will weigh them carefully, the goal is to contain the CAD at a level where it can be fully and safely financed," Chidambaram told reporters after presenting the interim budget in parliament earlier.

"The operative word is, we will look into it," he said.

India, desperate to trim a gaping current account deficit, took a slew of measures last year to curb demand for bullion, its second-biggest import after oil.

Due to the restrictions on imports, China has surpassed India as the world's biggest buyer of gold.

Industry participants had expected a cut in import duty from the record 10 percent on gold in the interim budget.

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