Cotton export registrations for the 2012-13 season stood at 4.5 lakh bales as of November 5, Commerce Minister Anand Sharma said on Monday.

The corresponding figure for last year was not available. However, the country’s total cotton exports for the 2011-12 season stood at a record 129 lakh bales.

For cotton season 2012-13, the Cotton Advisory Board has estimated a production of 334 lakh bales and pegged the exportable surplus of 70 lakh bales.

“There is a decline in international cotton prices due to overstocking and lower global mills demand during the last cotton season. Domestic cotton prices have followed the global price decline trend, but less steeply, so that the differential between international and domestic prices has narrowed considerably and at times become negative,’’ Sharma told the Lok Sabha in a written reply.

The Commerce Minister said there is no ban on cotton exports category for 2012-13 season. Cotton exports are currently on open general licence subject to a prescribed procedure of registration.