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Call to bring Austrian gold back home from the UK

There is heated debate in Austria after it was revealed that the country's National bank (OeNB) is storing its gold reserves in England.

In response to a parliamentary question the bank said that 224. 4 tonnes (around 80%) of Austrian gold reserves were in the United Kingdom, around 6.9 tonnes (around 3%) are in Switzerland and around 48.7 tonnes (around 17%) are in Austria itself.

The OeNB said that the reason to store gold abroad was that because in a time of crisis it could be speedily traded. Since 2007 Austria's National bank had had a constant reserve of around 280 tons of gold. Through leasing of its gold the Austrian National Bank has in the last 10 years earned around 300,000,000 euros.

The bank's governor Wolfgang Duchatczek revealed the statistics after a question by social Democrat MP Matznetter who wanted to know why Great Britain was regarded as the best place to store Austrian gold .

Duchatczek said: "The bank has always made it clear that our gold reserves are stored at the main gold trading centres."

Currently that would be London and Switzerland - specifically Basel, he said. The gold that the bank has in Austria itself is stored at the Austrian Mint in Vienna.

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