India unlocks treasure trove of gold
- IPL spot-fixing: Chennai Super Kings owner's kin under police scanner
- BJP tears into UPA govt on 4th anniversary, says it lacks leadership
- Jessica Lal murder: Actor Shayan Munshi, ballistic expert Manocha to face perjury trial
- India seeks access from US to 26/11 terror convicts Headley, Rana
- BSE Sensex falls 49 pts, Larsen & Toubro Limited shares hit by Q4 data
Laxmibai Karanure sifts through the heavy bangles and necklaces that make up her entire life savings, working out which pieces to sell from the 100 grams of gold she holds to tide her family over during the drought at their farm.
The 55-year-old Karanure's heirlooms will add to a booming recycling trade, which could account for up to half of India's consumption this year and boost a fledgling refining industry.
The surge in recycling also comes as India looks set to be overtaken by China as the world's biggest consumer of gold, after a hike in import duties in March and a rapidly weakening rupee pushed local gold prices to record highs.
The potential for recycling is huge with India's 1.2 billion people estimated to have stored up about 20,000 tonnes of gold in various forms like jewellery, coins and bars, according to an estimate from industry body the World Gold Council -- about three times the holdings of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
We have no other option but to sell our gold in these tough times, said Karanure, speaking from her village in Chikkodi in the southwest Indian state of Karnataka.
She could get nearly 150,000 Indian rupees ($2,800) from the sale of her bangles and necklaces, a vital source of income after drought this year has slashed rural incomes.
The Bombay Bullion Association (BBA) estimates the supply of recycled gold in India will hit 300 tonnes in 2012, up about five-fold from 2011 and the highest in more than a decade.
There won't be new demand from farmers and scrap will flow in the market, said Prithviraj Kothari, president of the BBA, made up of 400 bullion dealers and traders. In coming years, 50 percent of the requirements will be met through scrap.
Other traders and analysts agreed. Harshad Ajmera of Kolkata-based JJ Gold House estimates scrap supply at 200 tonnes this year.
- Fixing probe now reaches Bollywood, son of Dara Singh held
- BCCI cashes Pune Warriors guarantee, 'disgusted' Sahara walks out of IPL
- Sreesanth spent Rs 1.95L on clothes, bought friend BlackBerry, paid in cash: Police
- Delhi firm with MoD as client is linked to Pak cyberattacks
- After Infosys, iGATE sacks Phaneesh Murthy for sexual misconduct
- 2 weeks after harassment, Haryana schoolgirls return, cops in tow