World Gold Council Anticipates Orderly Execution of IMF Gold Sales

By World Gold Council, PRNE
Wednesday, February 17, 2010

LONDON, February 18, 2010 - World Gold Council welcomes the announcement by the
International Monetary Fund (IMF), that the next phase of its previously
announced gold sales programme will be undertaken in a phased and transparent
manner. The gold sales follow the IMF Executive Board's decision in September
to approve sales of the metal totalling 403.3(t). The successful first
phase sale to Central Banks had no impact on the smooth functioning of the
gold market and the remaining sales to be undertaken in phase two of the
programme are also not anticipated to be disruptive. The sales by the IMF in
phase two do not represent a net addition to supply because they will be
accommodated under the Central Bank Gold Agreement.

The sale of 212 tonnes to the central banks of India (200t),
Sri Lanka (10t) and Mauritius (2t) in November 2009 represents more than half
of the total amount of gold to be sold by the IMF under the programme and was
executed at market prices, in line with the IMF's Articles of Agreement. It
also took place in accordance with the stated commitment of the IMF to follow
the recommendations of The Crockett Report[1] of 2007 and ensure that its
gold sales do not disrupt the smooth functioning of the gold market.

The next phase will see 191.3 tonnes (t) sold to the gold
market and reaffirms the commitment by the IMF to follow the recommendations
of The Crockett Report. IMF has stated that: "The initiation of on-market
sales does not preclude further off-market gold sales directly to interested
Central Banks." Further, IMF's Executive Board has reaffirmed "the
long-standing principle that the Fund has a systemic responsibility to avoid
causing disruptions that would adversely affect gold holders and gold
producers, as well as the functioning of the gold market."

Aram Shishmanian, Chief Executive Officer, World Gold Council, said:

"The public restatement by the IMF of its commitment to
execute the final sales under its previously approved programme in a
responsible manner, once again demonstrates its commitment to an orderly

"The outlook for gold remains positive precisely because of
the unique diversity of the gold market. Resilient investment demand, and
progressive improvements in jewellery and industrial demand are part of the
picture. Supply trends are equally as important as demonstrated in 2009. Net
purchasing by central banks in recent quarters, constrained mine supply and a
more stable level of recycling activity, all help to ensure that gold
continues to retain the qualities which make it an important preserver of
wealth and a key component of an effectively diversified portfolio for
central banks and investors alike."

World Gold Council recently released its Gold Demand Trends
report for 2009 which provides data that indicates Central Banks are
continuing to diversify their portfolios with an increased allocation to
gold. The Gold Demand Trends report revealed a significant reduction in net
official sector sales in 2009 of 44t compared to an average of 444t over the
five year period up to 2008 with Central Banks, in the aggregate, turning net
buyers in the last three quarters of the year.

Given the IMF's status as effectively the global "lender of
last resort", World Gold Council believes it is imperative that the
organisation continues to hold large gold reserves and acknowledges the IMF's
public declarations that:

"The IMF should continue to hold a relatively large amount of
gold among its assets, not only for prudential reasons, but also to meet
unforeseen contingencies."

Notes to Editors:

World Gold Council

The World Gold Council's mission is to stimulate and sustain
the demand for gold and to create enduring value for its stakeholders. It is
funded by the world's leading gold mining companies. For further information

Gold Demand Trends

The full 2009 Q4 Gold Demand Trends report in English,
including country breakdowns, can be viewed at:

Crockett Report

It was the Crockett Report that first proposed the IMF should
adopt a new income model, including the establishment of an endowment, funded
by the proceeds of limited and structured gold sales. At the G-20 Leaders
Summit in April of 2009, heads of state proposed to use additional resources
from the gold sales to provide an extra US $4 billion for poor and indebted
countries over the next 2-3 years.

A copy of the full Crockett Report can be found at:


[1] See Notes to Editors

For further information: David Schraeder, MS&L Worldwide on: +1-646-221-0108 or david.schraeder at; George Milling-Stanley, Managing Director, Government Affairs, World Gold Council, on +1-212-317 3848, or email george.milling-stanley at

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