Agri Business

Cotton body cuts output estimate

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 24, 2018 Published on March 31, 2015

Cotton production for the season ending September has been pruned by 10 lakh bales (lb) to 390 lb due to unseasonal rain and erratic monsoon.

Addressing the media after the second Cotton Advisory Board meeting held here on Tuesday, Kiran Soni Gupta, Textile Commissioner, Ministry of Textiles, said cotton output has been revised downward compared with the October projections, keeping the arrival trend in the market and feedback from the trade.

Cotton imports estimate has been increased to 8 lb against 7 lb projected at the last CAB meeting as the country had already imported 5 lb till February end, she said.

Consumption by mills and small scale units has been raised to 305 lb (301 lb). Exports are expected to be lower at 70 lb against 90 lb estimated in October as the country has managed to export only 33 lb till February end.

The overall demand was pegged lower at 390 lb against 416 lb recorded last year, while supply is seen at 430 lb (449 lb), leaving a surplus of 40 lb.

Last year, the country produced 398 lb of cotton and total supply, including import of 11 lb and opening stock of 40lb, was 448 lb and demand was 416 lb.

Gupta said the availability of more cotton will help in value-addition and support the Prime Minister’s “Make in India” programme.

On the other hand, she said, the recent increase in international cotton prices to 70 cents per pound against India’s average price of 65 cents would throw up interesting export opportunities, though demand has been weak with China cutting down on its procurement.

Cotton Corporation of India, which procures cotton at minimum support price, has purchased 86 lb of cotton worth ₹16,000 crore till mid-March.

BK Mishra. Managing Director, Cotton Corporation of India, said it would start selling cotton in the domestic market from April as 75 per cent of the produce has arrived in the market.

Disputing with the industry’s claim on hoarding, he said if “we had offloaded cotton from January then the prices would have fallen below MSP and we would have ended up purchasing over 100 lb”.

On the possibility of exports, he said delegates from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Vietnam and Sri Lanka have visited India and have shown interest.

Published on March 31, 2015
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