By admin       2017-10-31

Coimbatore: With a bumper cotton crop expected during the 2017-18 season (October-September), the Indian Cotton Federation (ICF) has urged the union government to direct the state-run CCI (Cotton Corporation of India) to procure 100 lakh bales (a bale is 170 kgs). "This would help in a big way to maintain stable cotton prices throughout the year and create a win-win situation to lndian cotton farmers and entire textile chain," ICF president J Thulasidharan said in a memorandum to the Prime Minister. While a record crop of 400 lakh bales is estimated for the 2017-18 season making India the biggest producer of cotton for the third consecutive season, mill consumption will be around 300-310 lakh bales. Cotton sowing has reached a record high of 122.6 lakh hectares in the country during the just concluded kharif season on the back of good rainfall in key growing regions. Estimates show that cotton acreage has increased by about 20% during the season. "Good cotton prices during the last three years and poor remunerative prices from alternative crops had encouraged farmers to grow more cotton," Thulasidharan said. According to lnternational Cotton Advisory Committee's (ICAC's) latest report, a similar situation is expected in other cotton growing countries, resulting in 75% surplus cotton globally for 2017-18. "Due to the oversupply in domestic and global markets and due to liquidity issues, there would not be sufficient buyers in the lndian market which would affect the Indian cotton farmer very badly," Thulasidharan stated. About 70% of the cotton is brought to the market by farmers between November and February. The value of this cotton would be about Rs 58,300 crore. "Boosting cotton exports by incentives or other means would only bring negative impact as it would bring down global cotton prices, which would further affect domestic market prices and also increase in import of cotton," the ICF president pointed out. "Further our competing countries would benefit from cheaper cotton in the international markets," he said. lndian cotton prices typically rule below international prices during the first half of the cotton season when farmers market most of their produce. Substantial cotton exports also happen during this timeframe when financially strong spinning mills, traders and multi-national companies cover huge quantities of cotton. During the second half of the season, cotton prices start moving upwards and remain above international prices due to higher exports. "To support the farmers, Cotton Corporation of lndia should be advised to act as a stabiliser for prices and procure around 100 lakh bales during the peak season and make it available for consuming mills during the non-season time," Thulasidharan said. "This would stabilise prices for the benefit of the farmers across Gujarat, Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and few more states with a monitoring mechanism to see that cotton prices do not dip and is around MSP (minimum support price)," he stated.

Download App

# #

Member Login