India’s gold reserves went up by 42.3 tonnes in the one-year period ended March 31, 2021, against 40.45 tonnes in the year-ago period.

As at end-March 2021, the Reserve Bank held 695.31 tonnes of gold as part of its foreign exchange reserves management against 653.01 tonnes as at March-end 2020, as per the central bank’s “Half Yearly Report on Management of Foreign Exchange (Fx) Reserves.”

During the half year period (October 2020 - March 2021) under review, India’s Fx reserves increased from $544.69 billion as at end-September 2020 to $576.98 billion as at end-March 2021.

In value terms (US Dollar), the share of gold in the total Fx reserves decreased from about 6.69 per cent as at end-September 2020 to about 5.87 per cent as at end-March 2021, the report said.

As at March-end 2021, while 403.01 tonnes of gold (360.71 tonnes as at March-end 2020) was held overseas in safe custody with the Bank of England and the Bank of International Settlements (BIS), 292.30 tonnes of gold (unchanged from March-end 2020) was held domestically, RBI said.

At the end of December 2020, the foreign exchange reserves cover of imports increased to 18.6 months from 17.1 months at end-September 2020, the report said.

As per the report, the ratio of short-term debt (original maturity) to reserves, which was 18.9 per cent at end-September 2020, declined to 17.7 per cent at end-December 2020.

Further, the ratio of volatile capital flows (including cumulative portfolio inflows and outstanding short-term debt) to reserves declined from 68.0 per cent at end-September 2020 to 67.0 per cent at end-December 2020.