You can now earn an interest up to 2.5 per cent on your gold stocks. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched the ambitious Gold Monetisation Scheme (GMS) 2015, which will offer an option to deposit the precious metal in banks and earn interest up to 2.5 per cent on the value. Another scheme, the Sovereign Gold Bonds Scheme, was also launched where the investors will be able to earn an interest rate of up to 2.75 per cent per annum by buying paper bonds.
The Prime Minister also unveiled the first ever Indian gold coin & bullion bearing National Emblem Ashok Chakra on one side and Mahatma Gandhi’s image engraved on the other side.
The announcement regarding Gold Monetisation schemes, Gold Bond schemes and the Ashok Chakra bearing gold coins was first made by Union Finance minister Arun Jaitley during his 2015-16 Budget speech.
Launching the scheme in New Delhi, PM Modi said that India has surpassed China as the world’s largest gold consumer, buying 562 tonnes of yellow metal so far this year, against China’s 548 tonnes.
“People should take advantage of the golden opportunity to help India march to a golden period,” the Prime Minister said adding that there is no reason for the country, which has 20,000 tonnes of gold lying idle with households and institutions, to remain poor.
There is a positive anticipation that the launch of these ambitious schemes will increase the availability of gold and bring down its import. India currently imports around 1,000 tonnes of gold every year, leading to outflow of Forex reserves.
Hailing the scheme, PM Modi even went on to describe it as “sone pe suhaaga” (icing on the cake).
Also, describing the launch of the Indian Gold Coin bearing the Ashok Chakra as a matter of pride for the nation, the Prime Minister said that people would no longer have to depend on foreign-minted gold bullion or coins. Initially the coins will be available in denominations of 5 and 10 grams, while 20 gram bullion will also be available through 125 MMTC outlets.
Speaking at the occasion, Arun Jaitley said that gold lying idle with individual can be a personal savings but it does not help in development of country. The Union Finance minister expressed hope that citizen would take advantage of these three schemes. He further said the import of gold will come down with the launch of sovereign gold bond scheme.
The Gold Monetisation Scheme will replace the existing Gold Deposit Scheme, 1999. However, the deposits outstanding under the Gold Deposit Scheme will be allowed to run till maturity unless the depositors prematurely withdraw them.
According to Gold Monetisation Scheme, 2015, the minimum deposit for the raw gold (bars, coins, jewellery excluding stones and other metals) should be equivalent to 30 grams of 995 fineness. However, there is no maximum limit for deposit under the scheme.
With regard to the Sovereign Gold Bonds, the RBI in consultation with the Centre has decided to issue such instruments carrying an annual interest rate of 2.75 per cent. Applications for the bonds will be accepted from November 5 till November 20 and bonds will be issued on November 26. These bonds will be sold through banks and designated post offices.
(With inputs from the PTI)