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Cotton production likely to be around 378.75 lakh bales: Cotton Association of India

Tuesday, 24 December 2013 - 5:59pm IST | Agency: PTI

The country's cotton production is expected to be around 378.75 lakh bales while consumption is likely to be around 300 lakh bales this year.

The cotton production this year is expected to be not less than 378.75 lakh bales while its consumption is likely to be around 300 lakh bales. This will leave a sizeable surplus of about 137 lakh bales," Cotton Association of India (CAI) President Dhiren Sheth said at the 91st AGM here.

Initial reports suggest a record crop during the cotton season 2013-14. Although, the acreage under cotton is not expected to exceed that of the cotton season 2012-13, timely rains have brightened the chance of achieving higher yields, Sheth said.

Gujarat has seen an increase of 10 per cent in acreage on the back of a good monsoon compared to drought conditions in 2012-13. All other cotton growing states have also received a good rainfall this monsoon as against a below par rainfall in 2012-13, he said.

Commenting on world cotton scenario, Sheth said, the world cotton production is expected to out pace world consumption in 2013-14. Despite delays in several countries this season, harvesting in the northern hemisphere is nearing completion and production is projected at 25.6 million tons, down by 1.2 million tons from last season.

Cotton area is falling by 1 million hectares from last season to 32.8 million hectares, and the average yield is down slightly to 781 kilograms per hectare.

World cotton consumption is forecast at 23.8 million tons in 2013-14, up 2 per cent from last season. Consumption in 2014-15 is also expected to rise further by 3 per cent to 24.6 million tons. Consumption in China in both 2013-14 and 2014-15 are forecast to be lower than the previous four seasons, decreasing to 8 million tons in 2013-14 and 7.8 million tons in 2014-15.

On the other hand, consumption in India and Pakistan are both forecast to increase in 2013-14 and 2014-15.

India's consumption in 2013-14 is forecast at 5.1 million tonnes, with an increase of 12 per cent from the average of 4.5 million tons for the last four seasons.

In 2014-15, its consumption is forecast to increase a further 7 per cent from the current season to 5.5 million tonnes. Pakistan averaged 2.3 million tonnes in the last four completed seasons. Its consumption in 2013-14 is forecast to increase 8 per cent over the average to 2.5 million tonnes, and in 2014-15, to increase to 2.6 million tonnes.

While world cotton consumption is expected to see modest growth this season and next, the projected accumulation of cotton stocks will weigh on international cotton prices.

However, the extent of this downward pressure will depend largely on how the Chinese national reserve is handled and on the timing and amount of additional import quotas, Sheth said. 

The present average yield in India is just about 500 kg per hectare as against the world average of about 790 kg, not to speak of very high yields harvested by some other countries, he pointed out.

With an average yield of around 2,140 kg per hectare, Australia is the world's leader in the matter of productivity. Some of the other countries with high yield are Turkey with 1,759 kg/ha and Brazil with 1,459 kg/ha. Israel also has a very high yield of 1,786 kg/ha. But, its area under cotton is just about 8,000 hectares.

China's average yield is also quite high at 1,467 kg/ha, nearly three times that of India.

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