The Pakistan government has fixed a target to cultivate the cotton crop over an area of 3.11 million hectares during the crop season 2017/18 to fulfill the domestic requirements of the commodity, as well as for export purposes, said Dr Khalid Abdullah, cotton commissioner in the ministry of textile industry on Wednesday.
During the current sowing season, Pakistan cotton cultivation witnessed 18 percent increase across the crop growing areas as compared to the sowing during the corresponding period of the last year.
The crop cultivation targets for Punjab were set at 2.42 million hectares and in Sindh it was set to cultivate the cotton over an area of 0.65 million hectares, he said.
So far, cotton crop has been cultivated over 1.54 million hectares of land in Punjab, whereas the Sindh province had put around 0.299 million hectares of land under the cotton crop cultivation.
Meanwhile, Dr Abdullah said that cotton has been cultivated over 1.84 million hectares across the crop growing areas of the country as against the set target of 3.11 million hectares.
Overall, the cotton crop has been cultivated over 59 percent area of the total targeted areas set for the current sowing season (2017/18).
Punjab had achieved 63.5 percent crop sowing targets set for the current season, whereas Sindh was able to achieve 46 percent area of the total cultivable land, he added.
Dr Abdullah also said that the cotton cultivation had witnessed 31.5 percent increase in Punjab; however, it was reduced by 21 percent in Sindh during the period under review.
The cotton commissioner said that agriculture experts from Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were provided three months training in order to bring the potential areas under cotton production to enhance the local crop output. The Federal Committee on Cotton (FCC) had fixed cotton production targets at 14 million bales during the current crop sowing season.
Due to favourable weather conditions, the availability of certified seeds and other crop inputs, it was expected that the targeted areas for the current sowing season would be achieved.
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