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KARACHI: Business remained bearish on local cotton market on Friday. Market sources told that trading activity is improving after the rains as the supply of Phutti is improving. The millers have started imported cotton from abroad because of the high prices of the local cotton. Picking was also affected due to rains.

Cotton Analyst Naseem Usman told that the industrialists have said that the country will suffer irreparable losses if the government fails to persuade the Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) to maintain full gas pressure in all the industrial estates of the city.

The industrial units in all the seven industrial estates of the city had been continuously suffering from huge production losses due to the frequent drop in gas pressure due to which the industrial units operating on gas or generating power from gas had either stopped operating altogether or they were working under capacity.

They criticized the government for what they said "its failure to manage the ongoing gas crisis", warning the government that the industries could not be run under the present circumstances.

Ismail Suttar, president of the Lasbela Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), has urged the federal government to take the matter up with the SSGC management to have it urgently resolved by taking all the important direct beneficiaries into confidence.

Meanwhile, ICE cotton futures rose on Thursday, helped by mill fixations and as investors covered short positions ahead of a federal monthly supply-demand report. Cotton contracts for December settled up 0.61 cent, or 1%, at 64.81 cents per lb.

"There is fresh demand that has hit the market over the last couple of days and shorts are being covered by merchants because of that," said Louis Barbera, partner and analyst at VLM Commodities LTD.

The market is now awaiting the US Department of Agriculture's (USDA) weekly export sales report and its monthly World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on Friday.

A slightly lower crop production and demand is expected from the WASDE report, while another round of buying is expected from China, Vietnam and Turkey in the export sales report, Barbera added.

Last month, cotton prices had dropped 2% after the monthly supply-demand report projected higher production and inventories of both the US and global crop. Director Multan Cotton Research Institute Dr Zahid Mahmood in his message to the farmers said that next 40 days are very important for the quality and good production of the cotton. He said that there is a threat of attack of insects on the cotton crop.

Naseem also told that as per media reports Sindh farmers have lost nearly half-a-million bales of cotton ever since the monsoon season began and pest attacks intensified following the humid weather.

He also told that 600 bales of Hyderabad were sold at Rs 7750 to Rs 8000, 1200 bales of Shahdadpur were sold at Rs 7750 to Rs 8100, 1200 bales of Nawabshah were sold at Rs 8200, 1200 bales of Tando Adam were sold at Rs 8200 to Rs 8250, 1200 bales of Burewala were sold in between Rs 8550 to Rs 8700, 1200 bales of Haroonabad were sold in between Rs 8550 to Rs 8700, 400 bales of Faqirwali, 400 bales of Mian Channu, 2000 bales of Chishtian were sold at Rs 8600, 200 bales of Dharanwala were sold at Rs 8650, 600 bales of Chichawatni, 400 bales of Bahwalnagar, 400 bales of Rajanpur were sold at Rs 8700.

He also told that rate of cotton in Sindh was in between Rs 7500 to Rs 8200.The rate of cotton in Punjab is in between Rs 8400 to Rs 8600. He also told that Phutti of Sindh was sold in between Rs 3000 to Rs 3800 per 40 kg. The rate of Phutti in Punjab is in between Rs 3300 to Rs 41000 per 40 kg.

The rate of Banola in Sindh was in between Rs 1550 to Rs 1650 while the price of Banola in Punjab was in between Rs 1750 to Rs 1800. The Spot Rate remained unchanged at Rs 8550 per maund. The polyester fiber was available at Rs 153 per kg.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020