Swiss gold exports in 2014 fall 60 pct, China buys up one-third

Feb 3, 2015 - 9:58 AM GMT

Switzerland exported just 140.3 tonnes of gold in December, according to official Swiss Customs Administration statistics, bringing overall Swiss gold exports for the year to 1,746.1 tonnes of gold.

The 2014 figure represents a near-sixty percent fall on overall exports in 2013, which came in at 2,777 tonnes.

Of those exports, 31.7 tonnes of gold, including gold plated with platinum, in unwrought forms or for non-monetary purposes, was exported to mainland China in December, bringing overall tonnage delivered to China in 2014 to 213.1 tonnes of gold.

Switzerland also exported 43.6 tonnes of gold into Hong Kong in December, bringing overall exports to 377.2 tonnes in total to Hong Kong in 2014. This means that collectively, 590.3 tonnes of gold was delivered to China and Hong Kong, accounting for one-third of the entirety of Swiss gold exports for the year.

Swiss statistics are a good indicator of the volume of metal being shipped into China, which does not publish official figures for gold imports.

By contrast, in what is perceived as a good barometer for demand, total Shanghai Gold Exchange withdrawals for 2014 totalled 2,102.36 tonnes.

Switzerland sourced most of its gold from the UK in 2014, accounting for around 30 percent of total imports of 2,205.9 tonnes for the year, with around ten percent respectively coming from both the US and Chile.

The country also delivered 13.7 tonnes of gold into India in December, bringing overall exports to the country to 471.2 tonnes of metal for the year.

Turkish imports of gold from Switzerland fell to just 5.8 tonnes in December from 22.8 tonnes in November. Overall imports for the year from Switzerland totalled 69 tonnes.

In others, Switzerland exported 134.2 tonnes to Singapore in  2014, 60.5 tonnes to Saudi Arabia, 88.9 tonnes to Germany and 66.2 tonnes to the Arab Emirates.

(Editing by Martin Hayes)