Pakistan, a cotton producing country ranks the eighth largest US cotton importer. The country imported1.69 lakhs of cotton bales from US in the previous fiscal year. In the current fiscal year (2014-15), Pakistan has committed to import more than 3.35 lakh bales from US.
Dahlen K Hancock, president of Cotton Council International (CCI) believes there is potential for even greater sales of US cotton to this growing market. CCI, which is the USâ€™s export promotions arm, conducted the trade mission.
The Pakistani delegation of textile executive from 11 Pakistani companies visited New York early this month to observe cotton research work in North Carolina and visited the US Department of Agriculture and a farm in Californiaâ€™s San Joaquin Valley. The group also met with the exporters in the cotton beltâ€™s four major regions. They observed cotton production, processing and marketing and to meet with US cotton exporters.
This event empowered CCI to provide some high-level Pakistani textile manufacturing executives a better understanding of US raw cottonâ€™s merits, including fiberâ€™s superior quality and industryâ€™s outstanding reputation for timely delivery, said Hancock, whoâ€™s cotton producer based in Texas.
This trade missionâ€™s companies are expected to collectively consume around 1.8 million bales of cotton 2014/15; of which 184,000 bales, or 10 percent, will be US cotton.
Pakistan imports high quality cotton from US and other countries to meet requirements of its textile industry. Local demand outstrips production and the demand-supply gap has to be filled through imports.
An economic survey said that the national cotton production stood at 12.8 million bales during the 2013-14 period against the target of 14.1 million bales, showing a decline of 9.2 percent against the target and fall of two percent over the last yearâ€™s production of 13 million bales.
Cotton, having a share of 1.4 percent in national GDP and 6.7 percent in agriculture value addition, is an important source of raw material to the textile industry of the country.
The cotton production decreased due to fall in acreage, which is due to low cotton rates nationally and internationally during the last couple of years that discouraged the growers.
This year countryâ€™s cotton output is estimated to be around 14.94 million bales which means that the country during 2015-16 is expected to import around two million bales
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