Tag Archives: dgcis

India Silver Import 2014 At 7,063 Tonnes, Up 15 %

India’s customs department, the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence & Statistics (DGCIS), just released the QUICK ESTIMATES FOR SELECTED MAJOR COMMODITIES for December 2014. According to DGCIS the figures for December are provisional and subject to change, however, I’ve been tracking these quick estimates for months and they are reasonably accurate – compared to the official numbers that lag a few months.

In December India imported $182.31 million in silver; divided by an average price of $16.3 an ounce this accounts for 11,188,095 ounces, or 348 tonnes, down 72 % from 1,254 tonnes in November. The total gross amount of silver imported in 2014 accounted for a whopping 7,063 tonnes, up 15 % from the shocking 6,125 tonnes in 2013. As far as my data goes back (2009) net silver import 2014, 7,055 tonnes, is a record.

Bullion Bulletin released a report in 2014, called An Empirical Study Of Silver Markets In India. In the intro it states:

Why has the silver import into India increased in 2013? We started talking to the industry. We could identify two causes – investment demand and jewelry demand. Investment demand was largely due to demand switch from gold and relative attractiveness of silver to gold.

Screen Shot 2015-01-26 at 10.30.32 AM
Courtesy of Bullion Bulletin

The quick estimates do not disclose any silver export; the official numbers do, but these are negligible as we can see in the next chart.

India Silver Import December 2014

India Yearly Net Silver Import 2009 - 2014

Note, the previous charts are build from numbers on silver as disclosed by the DGCIS, I do not know how much silver is exported in the form of jewelry or silverware. There are numbers available about the value of silver jewelry exports from India, published by the Gem & Jewelry Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), however these values can capture fabrication costs, gems and other precious metals. There for I don’t feel comfortable deriving exported silver tonnage from GJEPC data.

According to Bullion Bulletin total silver demand in India has been strong in recent years, 3,381 tonnes in 2010, 5,519 tonnes in 2011, 3,890 tonnes in 2012 and 5,822 in 2013. This demonstrates little silver import, as disclosed by DGCIS, is exported in the form of jewelry, silverware or industrial products.

Large inflows of silver into India are often supplied by the UK; we can see a clear pattern if we compare India gross import with UK net export to India.

India vs UK Monthly Silver Trade 2009 - 2014
Eurostat has not yet released any data from December 2014

Meaning the UK, the London Bullion Market, is drained from silver by the East just like it’s drained from gold by the East. I don’t see any silver shortages in the near term in the UK, but I’ll keep an eye on it.

Official India PM Import August: Gold Down, Silver Holds

India’s official gold import is coming down like a hammer. In August India’s gross gold import was a mere 17 tons, – 72 % m/m, – 65 % y/y. The lowest since February 2009. In the first 8 months of this year total gross import accounted for 708 tons, up 111 tons compared to the same period in 2012, or + 19 % y/y.

India monthly gold import August 2013

The main reason for this slump is India’s import duty on gold that was raised  in January from 4% to 6 %, in June to 8 % and in August to 10 %. Another reason is the 80/20 rule that came in force in August, forcing importers to directly re-export 20 % of their gold import. The results are that official import is decreasing, gold smuggling is increasing, premiums are making al time highs and silver imports are up. If we look at a chart from Nick Laird we can see that on top of the import duty Indians have to pay a premium of 12 % on gold, 22 % in total!

India Gold Premiums

Silver demand in india is extraordinary high this year. India gross silver import in August was 369 tons versus 212 tons in August 2012, an increase of  157 tons, + 74 % y/y.  Compared to July 2013 imports decreased 428 tons from 797 tons, – 54 % m/m. Year to date India gross silver import stands at 4311 tons, up 2440 tons compared to the same period in 2012, or + 130 %.

India monthly silver import augustus 2013

The DGCIS has not disclosed any gold or silver export numbers from August.

In Gold We Trust