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Tuesday, Jul 06, 2004

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Mills strike deal to import 6 lakh bales of cotton

Dhimant Bhatt

Mumbai , July 5

TRADERS have struck deals to import at least 6 lakh bales of cotton at an average price of 53-54 cents per pound (Rs 18,890-Rs19,480 per candy of 356.56 kg) for July-August delivery.

Spinning mills are buying imported cotton almost everyday now. American, Brazilian, Australian, West and East African and CIS cottons have been contracted. The time lag between now and till the arrival of the new crop was being filled, sources said.

``Majority of cottons are of long staple varieties ranging 116-118 staple length. There are reports that some Brazilian cotton import contracts have been made at 46-47 cents (Rs 16,600-Rs 17,000 per candy) for August delivery

``Cotton imports are on the rise because of non-availability of quality fibre. Due to delayed rains in cotton-growing areas and with the possibility of re-sowing, cotton arrivals will be late in the coming season. On the other hand, foreign cotton markets are ruling weak, while Indian cotton is firm. Imports may touch 7-8 lakh bales (of 170 kg),'' a leading broker said.

``Acreages of many crops will go astray as truant rainfall has hit sugarcane, rice, cotton, soya, groundnut and til crops badly. No genuine estimate is possible for some more time,'' he said.

In the domestic market, however, ready cotton is ruling from steady to firm with little forward business. There are reports of some forward deals for Shankar-6. Some early BT cotton will be available in Gujarat by August-end.

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