Source: dawn.com

The Newspaper's Staff Reporter

February 09, 2018

KARACHI: Cotton prices declined further on Thursday, in line with world leading cotton markets and the absence of buying interest from local spinners. Ginners are perturbed by the situation as they are still holding substantial quantity of unsold cotton. Due to falling cotton prices, phutti (seed cotton) also came under pressure and moved lowered.

Barring a few needy spinners who replenished their stocks, the market otherwise remained devoid of activity. A large number of looms are reported to have shutdown in Faisalabad owing to the flooding of grey cloth coming from India and China via Dubai. The closure of looms in large number should be a warning for the government, observed a leading broker Naseem Usman. During the last three consecutive sessions, spot rates were lowered by Rs300 per maund to Rs7,000, strongly indicating falling demand for cotton from the domestic market.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Agriculture Commission has strongly recommended to the provincial government to focus on increasing cotton production. Punjab produces around 70 per cent of the country’s total cotton production.

The commission also warned about the falling per acre yield which at one time used to be 22-25 maund per acre but has now fallen to 14.5 maund per acre. It suggested that experts should be involved in order to improve yield and pest resistance seed cotton should be evolved to ensure high crop.

There is a suggestion that sugarcane cultivation area should be reduced and cotton – which is a cash crop and being currently grown on 5.9 million acres (2.4m hectors) — be increased to 8.6m acres (3.5m hectors). The commission further directed the introduction of certified seed to meet climate change challenges.

The Karachi Cotton Association (KCA) spot rate was further cut by Rs100 to Rs7,000 per maund.

The following deals were reported to have changed hands on ready counter: 2,600 bales, Khanpur, at Rs7,000 to Rs7,200; 200 bales, Ghazi Ghat, at Rs7,200; 4,648 bales, Rahimyar Khan, at Rs7,000 to Rs7,050; 400 bales, Multan, at Rs6,450; 400 bales, Mianwali, at Rs6,200 to Rs6,450; 400 bales, Haroonabad, at Rs6,400; 200 bales, Chichawatni, at Rs6,400; and 200 bales, Shujabad, at Rs6,000. (Source: dawn.com)