"2014 was a year of stabilisation and innovation in the gold market, with annual gold demand down by just 4 percent after the record-breaking level of buying seen in 2013. What's particularly notable about 2014 is that the striking shift in physical gold demand from West to East is now being followed by gold infrastructure development in Asia," Grubb added.
Regarding investment demand of the yellow metal, the report said it was up 2 percent in 2014, from 885 tonnes in 2013 to 905 tonnes in 2014. "Total bar and coin investment was down 40 percent as investors, who had made major purchases in 2013 held back from further purchases. This was offset by a dramatic slowdown in outflows from exchange traded funds, from 880 tonnes in 2013 to 159 tonnes in 2014," the report said. The central banks continued to view the value of gold as a reserve asset in 2014, WGC said.
"Annual central bank demand was up 17 percent to 477 tonnes. This was particularly evident in the last quarter of 2014, when demand was up 40 percent year-on-year to 119 tonnes, making Q4 (October-December) 2014 the 16th consecutive quarter and 2014, the fifth consecutive year that central banks were net purchasers of gold," it added.