Now you can buy a gold bar like you can buy a can of soft drink at a vending machine. Except that the gold bar will probably set you back a little more. Its price will be calculated daily according to the price of gold on the world markets.
Asia Gold ATM has set up two gold-dispensing automated teller machines at high traffic hot spots Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa in Singapore, making it only the fourth country in the world to have such a thing. The others are the UAE, UK and US.
Its Malaysian chief executive Kong Kok Chee says he chose to set up the company’s first gold-dispensing ATMs in Singapore because its government had abolished the goods and services levies on gold and other precious metals. The city state’s importance as a financial and gold trading hub as well as a tourist destination for a large number of affluent individuals were also significant factors.
The machines will dispense gold bars, silver ingots and even gold ingots with the Merlion design. The gold products are 24 carats and are of the finest purity (999.9), crafted by top Swiss refiner PAMP. Payment may be done either in cash or credit card. But if you intend to pay in cash, be careful – the machines do not give change.
Asia Gold ATM plans to install two or three more such machines in other high-traffic locations in the near future. It is also looking to expand regionally to places such as Hong Kong, Macau and Malaysia.