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KARACHI: The rate of cotton remained stable. There is a need to take positive steps for increasing the production of cotton in the country. The Punjab government is working hard to increase cotton production. Prime Minister Imran Khan called for suggestions to increase agricultural production.

In the local cotton market during the last week textile and spinning mills had shown their interest in the buying of good quality cotton while ginners were also showing their interest in selling good quality cotton because arrival of Phutti is increasing as well as the rates are also increasing. Many ginners are stocking the cotton because they are expecting that rates of cotton will further increase. Overall the rate of cotton remained stable while the business volume remained satisfactory. The rate of dollar is fluctuating while increasing trend was witnessed in the rate of cotton internationally.

The rate of cotton in Sindh is in between Rs 8600 to Rs 9400 per maund. The rate of Phutti is in between Rs 3200 to Rs 4300 per 40 Kg. The rate of cotton in Punjab is in between Rs 8800 to Rs 9600 per maund. The rate of Phutti is in between RS 3300 to Rs 4800 per 40 Kg. The rate of cotton in Balochistan is in between Rs 8400 Rs 9200 per maund while the rate of Phutti is in between RS 3800 to Rs 5000 per 40 Kg.

The Spot Rate Committee of the Karachi Cotton Association has decreased the spot rate by Rs 100 per maund and closed it at Rs 9450 per maund.

Chairman Karachi Cotton Brokers Forum Naseem Usman told that over all bullish trends was witnessed in international cotton market. Fluctuation was seen in Rate of Promise (Waday ka Bhao) of New York Cotton which was after reaching the highest level of 74 American cent reached at 72 American cents. According to the weekly export report of USDA exports were increased by 64 % and under its influence the Rate of Promise (Waday Ka Bhao) may increase.

The rate of cotton over all remained stable in Brazil, Argentina and in Central Asian states while fluctuation was seen in the rate of cotton in India.

Prime Minister Imran Khan visited Faisalabad which is called Manchester of Pakistan in the textile sector. He met representatives of the textile sector there. He met representatives of the textile sector there and assured them that the government was interested in developing the textile sector. He recently announced that industries, especially the textile industry, will be given a discount in energy prices, which has led to the recovery of the textile sector.

The closed power-looms are said to have resumed operations, especially the power looms which made cloth were sold on throw away prices. The textile sector is reviving and according to the information 30,000 power looms are being imported while textile sector is getting export orders from abroad in good numbers due to which the textile sector has revived completely. There is a shortage of labour and it is expected that around 200,000 labourers are needed.

Naseem Usman told that PM Imran Khan is taking positive steps to revive the textile sector but no positive steps are being taken to increase the production of cotton, the raw material of the textile sector. The country's cotton production is steadily declining. This year's cotton production is lower than the last 30 years, which will be barely 6 million bales. However, due to the revival of the textile sector, the demand of cotton is increasing.

According to the importers of cotton up till now import agreements of more than 3 million bales were signed while there is a need of around 6 to 7 million bales of worth 5 billion dollars.

Naseem further told that government will get foreign exchange due to the revival of the textile sector and most of it will be paid in terms of cotton imports. Therefore, there is a need to take steps on war footings to increase the production of cotton in the country because cotton growers have been suffering due to low cotton crop for many years and if positive strategy has not been made for increasing the production of cotton then in future farmers will be attracted to alternative crops instead of cotton. Then after words it will be very difficult to convince them to cultivate cotton crop. It is a situation like now or never.

On the other hand, the Karachi Cotton Association has also appealed to the government yesterday that the cotton crop is declining alarmingly, so there is an urgent need to formulate a positive strategy to increase it.

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar and Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhr Imam talked about increasing cotton production in the country. It is said that they have considered importing new cotton seeds from China and the United States to boost cotton production, although no representatives relating to any cotton organisations was invited to the meeting.

Chairman Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association Dr Jaso Mal Limani told that agriculture Secretary has asked them to come up with positive suggestions for increasing the cotton crop. In the same way suggestions should be taken from the other related organizations and from the farmers' representatives. But all efforts should not be limited to words and suggestions, but should be taken seriously.

The other good news is that Prime Minister Imran Khan has invited the business tycoon in Islamabad and asked them to start corporate farming and also give suggestions for the promotion of agriculture. Cooperation of public and private sector will be beneficial for the progress of agriculture sector.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020


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