India likely to continue as second largest cotton producer

April 30th, 2008 - 1:09 pm ICT by admin  

Ahmedabad, April 30 (IANS) India is expected to retain its current position as the second largest producer, user and exporter of cotton in the new season beginning in August, says the Washington-based International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC). India overtook the US to occupy the number two position after China during the 2006-07 cotton season, says the ICAC. According to ICAC’s analysis of the current global cotton situation, India does not face any challenge to its position as American farmers are shifting to other crops like corn.

The ICAC, in which India is a founding member, is an international organisation dedicated to promoting cooperation in cotton trade.

Agreeing with the projection of the Cotlook Index, the ICAC said: “India is expected to continue in the same position in the next season as well, as in addition to US farmers, growers in other countries are also inclined to shift to the production of soybeans and wheat besides corn.”

Cotlook is a Britain-based organisation that provides international cotton market information and analysis on natural fibre.

The ICAC noted that India has so far produced 4.74 million tonnes (MT) of cotton in the current season as compared to 4.7 MT of the US. This season, India’s output has been pegged at 5.34 MT as against 4.14 MT of the US. According to Cotlook’s estimates, India’s production next season is likely to touch 5.61 MT while that of the US would decline further to 3.19 MT.

China continues to be the number one in production, consumption and imports. This despite a fall of over 100,000 tonnes in cotton production. Beijing is estimated to produce 7.62 MT cotton this season against last year’s 7.72 MT.

The fall in Chinese cotton crop has led to increased exports by other countries. The world cotton exports are expected to rise by 10 percent to 9.1 MT from last season’s 8.2 MT.

The ICAC has also forecast that the cotton prices will go up in the international market because of an expected decrease in the stocks-to-mill use ratio in the world.

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