Government looking at new ways of curbing gold imports'

The government is looking at new ways of curbing gold imports into the country that has only helped to widen the current account deficit (CAD), finance minister P Chidambaram has said.

"We are looking at some other steps to moderate the import of gold," the Financial Times quoted him as saying in an interview.

Till December India had imported gold worth $38 billion against imports worth $56 billion in the whole of the 2011-12 financial year.

The government had, last week, announced a hike in import duty on gold to 6 per cent from 4 per cent.

It had also linked gold ETF (exchange traded fund) schemes offered by mutual funds to gold deposit schemes of banks in a bid to release gold stocks into the market.

This "will unfreeze 15 to 20 tonnes of gold - idle gold - and bring it into the market. So if that idle gold comes into the market, it will moderate imports", Chidambaram said.