New Delhi: Despite high prices, jewellery demand in India, the world’s biggest gold consumer, grew by 36% to 184.5 tonnes in the third quarter ending September, according to the World Gold Council (WGC).
The sale of jewellery items stood 135.2 tonnes in the July-September period of 2009, it said in its latest report.
“India experienced the highest growth in jewellery demand posting a increase of 36%,” WGC said in its third-quarter review.
In rupee terms, India’s jewellery demand reached a remarkable Rs33,800 crore in the third quarter, 67% higher than the same period of 2009, it said.
Overall global gold jewellery demand for full-year 2010 is likely to exceed that of 2009 as demand in India is expected to continue to recover this year, it said.
According to the WGC report, jewellery demand will continue to face price pressure, though the higher demand during third quarter proves that consumers in Asian markets have shown resilience in the face of higher price levels.
During the third quarter, gold prices in India were between Rs18,000 and Rs19,500 per 10 gram. Currently, gold prices are ruling firm at Rs20,220 per 10 gram in the national capital, according to the Delhi Bullion Association.
Highlighting the triggers for jewellery demand in India during the third quarter, WGC said that restocking of gold by traders ahead of fourth quarter (October-December) festive season was a key driver of growth.
It further said the rising price helped to support demand for jewellery. “Consumers have adjusted their price expectations and are anticipating yet higher prices. This has had the twin effects of further reinforcing investment-related demand for gold jewellery, while also encouraging consumers to buy gold now rather than defer purchases to a time when prices are higher,” it noted.
Besides a rise in the rupee value against the US dollar offered Indian consumers from the full extent of the rise in the US dollar price during the third quarter, it added.
WGC is a non-profit association of the world’s leading gold mining companies.