The domestic cotton prices are higher than the minimum support price (MSP) in many parts of the country, which means Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) will have to buy cotton at higher prices this year.
The prices are lower in some states due to 35 lakh bales of surplus stocks and weak export demand. However prices are higher in north because of whitefly pest attack. Currently, the prices are the highest in Punjab at Rs 4,500 a quintal, while it is Rs 4,400 in Gujarat and Rs 4,200 in Maharashtra and Telangana.
However, this year government will procure only 20-25 lakh bales at the support price against 87 lakh bales last year, said CMD, Cotton Corporation of India (CCI), BK Mishra.
The corporation has so far purchased 3,000-4,000 bales in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh and procurement would continue mainly in these two states and partially in Maharashtra.
CCI has opened 84 centres in Telangana and 25 centres in Andhra Pradesh and targets to set up a total 43 centres in AP and 50 centres in Maharashtra. The Corporation is planning to open around 300 procurement centres across the country, mainly in the cotton belt comprising Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.
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