Gold supply and distribution have been affected during the wedding season. As the government has imposed prohibitory orders in highly-affected districts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection, gold supply and distribution have been affected in the peak sales season.

The Federation of Nepali Gold and Silver Dealers' Association (FeNeGoSiDA) has stated that gold trade has been affected in places where the prohibitory order has been imposed. Moreover, banks have also stated that they are facing difficulties in importing the precious yellow metal during this time.

The federation has already decided to close its central office during the prohibitory order. However, FeNeGoSiDA General Secretary Dharma Sundar Bajracharya said that gold shops had been shut in most places as businesses have been ordered to halt operations and customers are also unable to travel to the shops.

The federation has further stated that there is no need to import 20 kg gold per day as the sales have dropped, and expressed concerns about uneven distribution of gold in the present context.

FeNeGoSIDA has stated that the bankers' association has been requested to make arrangements for the sale and distribution of gold at the local level in the districts where restrictions have not been imposed.

FeNeGoSiDA Spokesperson Manoj Kumar Shah said that necessary consultations are being held between the businessmen and the bankers' association for this. He also urged the businessmen to carry out their operations by adopting special health safety measures.

"When gold was imported during the lockdown, it was feared that real traders and consumers would not be able to consume it. Back then, 500 kg of gold had remained idle at the banks for months, but it was sold out within a few days after the lockdown was lifted," he said.

However, FeNEGoSiDA does not have the data on where the gold was supplied. It has urged vigilance as a limited number of traders may acquire maximum amount of gold sold in such a way.

A version of this article appears in the print on May 1, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.