NEW DELHI – At $609 billion as on June 25, India has emerged as the fifth largest foreign exchange reserves holder in the world after China, Japan, Switzerland and Russia, Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary said in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha on Monday.

India’s foreign exchange reserves position is comfortable in terms of import cover of more than 18 months and provides cushion against unforeseen external shocks.

The government and RBI are closely monitoring the emerging external position calibrating policies or regulations to support robust macroeconomic growth, assured the minister.

The RBI, he said, takes regular steps for diversification of forex reserves by scaling up operations in forex swap and repo markets, acquisition of gold and exploring new markets/products, while adhering to safety and liquidity standards.