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Egypt and Turkey among top gold buyers

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Egypt purchased 44.1 tonnes of gold in March, and Turkey bought 42.5 tonnes in April

Egypt and Turkey were some of the biggest buyers of gold reserves this year, according to the latest figures from the World Gold Council.

“On a year-to-date basis, central banks remain net purchasers on the whole,” Mukesh Kumar, senior analyst of the World Gold Council, said in his report issued this week.

“Egypt is the largest buyer following its chunky 44.1 tonnes purchase in March, but Turkey is not far behind, having bought 42.5 tonnes to the end of April,”

Turkey’s purchases put it at number 13 in the rankings, with gold now representing 27.7 percent of its reserves.

Although it was the largest buyer, Egypt ranked 33rd with its gold reserves of 125 tonnes making up 21.8 percent of its total government reserves.

World Gold Council figures showed that Saudi Arabia, the largest economy in the Gulf, ranked 18th with 323.1 tonnes of gold, representing 4.2 percent of reserves, while the United Arab Emirates ranked 48th globally, with 55.3 tonnes and gold accounting for just 2.5 percent of total reserves.

The United States topped the list with 8,133.5 tonnes and gold accounting for 68.5 percent of reserves. On Tuesday, Reuters reported that the US Treasury Department said that gold-related transactions involving Russia may be sanctioned.

“This is an important matter… We’re closely monitoring any efforts we can see to circumvent our Russia-related sanctions through the use of gold,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was quoted as saying on Tuesday.

It was reported on Wednesday that spot gold was down 0.23 percent to $1,847.64 per ounce.