• Saturday, August 13, 2022

Business

Russia backs India’s first-ever bullion exchange as challenge to West

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi shakes hand with Russian president Vladimir Putin (Photo by MIKHAIL METZEL/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

RUSSIA has welcomed India’s decision to set up its first bullion exchange and said the India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX) may soon challenge exchanges located in nations such as the UK, the US and Singapore.

Mikhail Glazachev, financial counsellor of the Russian Embassy in India, told this to his country’s state-run TASS news agency.

“India is the second (after China) gold consumer worldwide. That’s why the decision to create a specialized trading platform on the territory of the country, which will open on Friday (29), appears fairly natural. According to the representation of professional traders, the India International Bullion Exchange can become a decent competitor to peer markets in London, New York and Singapore, offering a broad range of services at lower prices,” Glazachev said.

‘Launch could not have a better time’

“The launch of such exchange in India could not have a better time in current conditions for Russian exporters of precious metals,” the diplomat said.

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi will launch the bullion exchange at Gujarat International Finance Tech-City on Friday, during his two-day visit to the western state, which is also his home turf.

As per Indian statistics, gold bullions supplied from Russia to India totaled $238.6 million or 40 per cent above the last-year figure during 11 months of the 2021-22 financial year.

“I expect participation of domestic companies in organized trading will lead to times’ growth of Russian gold turnover on the Indian market. Further, the exchange is located on the territory of the GIFT City special economic zone, which provides a series of fiscal and customs duties,” the Russian expert said.

Glazachev said there is a need to create an alternative to the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) which will not follow political interests of individual members while making decisions.

In March, LBMA suspended all Russian refineries from its accredited list, which meant their newly minted bars could no longer trade at one of the world’s key bullion centres. It took the step following the imposition of sanctions on Russia by the UK, US and the European Union over its invasion in Ukraine.

“Appearance of such platform would promote more transparent international pricing of precious metals, strengthening of supply chains and creating common rules of the game,” Glazachev added.

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