Higher cotton production likely this season


KARACHI: Higher cotton production prospects for this season have brightened following sustained phutti (seed cotton) arrivals during the last fortnight.

Figures released by the ginners’ body on Friday show the total cotton production up to Nov 15 stood at 8.78 million bales, up 9.49 per cent from the corresponding period a year ago.

Both Sindh and Punjab have so far recorded better cotton production figures.

Punjab had lost up to 40pc of its cotton crop in the last season. But it has recorded 15.59pc higher production at 5.38m bales against 4.65m bales a year ago.

However, reports from cotton-growing areas in Punjab suggest cotton balls were damaged due to excessive heat during the maturing period of plants. Its full impact will be known only by the end of the season.

The cotton production in Sindh recorded a rise of 1.65pc for the period under review on a year-on-year basis. In total, 3.45m bales have been produced so far against 3.39m bales a year ago.

Meanwhile, spinners seem far from being worried about the falling cotton production because they believe 10-11m bales (depending on the weight of a bale at 170kg or 155kg) will be sufficient to meet their demand.

Talking to Dawn, textile spinner Asif Enam said about 30pc of the spinning capacity of the country is closed down due to the wrong duty structure and cheap imports of textile goods. “We have been drawing the government’s attention to the high cost of doing business, but to no avail,” he lamented.

Spinners have so far purchased 4.68m bales against 5.52m bales a year ago. Similarly, exporters have lifted 155,544 bales as opposed to 343,155 bales in the corresponding period last year.

Ginners are holding 2.04m bales of unsold cotton stocks, which is a little less than 2.16m bales that they held in the same period of the last season, according to the Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association.