Kathmandu: Nepal’s bullion market has lost more than Rs 40 billion due to a seven-month lockdown to control and prevent the global coronavirus (Covid 19).
According to the Federation of Nepali Gold and Silver Entrepreneurs, the Nepali market, which consumes 30 kg of gold daily, has suffered a loss of more than Rs 40 billion due to the strike.
The gold market came to a complete standstill due to the continuous downturn from March 26 to July 20. According to the federation, the gold trade has come to a standstill as people did not come out of the market due to high price rise and corona panic.
According to the federation’s data, under normal circumstances, Nepal consumes an average of 30 kg of gold daily. At Rs 80,000 per 10 grams, the daily turnover is Rs 240 million and the monthly turnover is Rs 7.20 billion.
According to the Department of Customs, gold worth Rs 883.7 million was imported from abroad from April to mid-July last year. Similarly, 100 kg of gold worth Rs. 737 million has been imported till September this year. In a period of seven months, about Rs 1.5 billion worth of gold was imported from abroad and people sold gold due to high inflation.
The Federation estimates that the daily turnover has been 5 to 10 percent compared to the past one month.
At present, the owners have reached the stage where they cannot even pay the salary to the workers. As the business has come to a standstill for the past seven months, it has become a problem to pay only the Nepali workers here. The price hike along with the corona is no different than the collapse of Nepal’s gold business.
The government does not have the exact number of gold and silver traders in the country and how many of them are employed. According to the Federation of Gold and Silver Entrepreneurs, there are about 20,000 gold and silver traders in the country. About 7,000 of them are affiliated to the federation.