ISLAMABAD   -  Owing to lower pricing trend in domestic market, cotton arrival in the start of the current season had witnessed sluggish trend, going down by 0.365 million bales as compared the arrival of the corresponding period of last year.

According to the latest data released by the Pakistan Cotton Ginner’s Association (PCGA), by September 15, 2019, the cotton arrival in the local markets decreased by 26.41 percent as about 1,852,408 cotton bales arrived against the arrival of 2,517,345 bales of same period of last year. The slow crop arrival in the local markets was mainly attributed to the low pricing trend in the markets, coupled with delay in the announcement of the minimum support prices for the crop by the government. The cotton arrival from Punjab also decreased by 38.95 percent as about 598,314 cotton bales arrived in the market from Punjab as against arrival of 980,139 bales of the same period of last year, it added.

Meanwhile, crop arrival from the Sindh Province including Balochistan also remained on the down track as it decreased by 18.42 percent and was recorded at 1,254,095 bales against 1,537,208 cotton bales of the period under review, the data reveled.

Out of the total arrived cotton, about 1,669,718 bales were pressed against the pressing of 2,039,037 bales of last year, whereas 1,584,337 bales were sold against 1,939,501 bales sold during same period of last year.

The unsold cotton bales were recorded at 85,381 against the last year’s unsold of 99,538 bales.

Commenting on the slow cotton arrival in the domestic market, Ministry of National Food Security and Research Cotton Commissioner in the Dr Khalid Abdullah said that delay in cotton support price was the main factor in decrease of commodity prices in local markets.

He said that due to decreasing price trend in the local markets, the farmers were discouraged to cultivate the crop and area under crop cultivation had decreased during current sowing season.

However, he said that as soon as the government announces minimum indicative price of the commodity, it would help in stabilisation of cotton prices in the local markets.

Dr Khalid further said that cotton crop output during current season was expected to reach 12 million bales as against the set targets of 12.72 million bales.

The cotton sowing target for the current crop season (2019-20) was fixed at 2.78 million hectares, Punjab and Sindh had the main covered areas with crop.