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Govt discusses farmers' demand to raise cotton MSP
17
Nov '15
With cotton prices falling below the minimum support price levels at some places as well as farmers' demand to raise the support price for this year to protect the growers' interest, the Centre held a discussion on the issue on November 16, according to an agency report.

The government has already fixed the minimum support price (MSP) at Rs 4,100 per quintal for long staple cotton and Rs 3,800 per quintal for medium staple cotton for the 2015-16 marketing year.

Minister of State for Agriculture Mohanbhai Kalyanjibhai Kundariya said that all cotton-growing states are demanding increase in MSP and that the matter would be taken up at a higher level. With some farmers also demanding bonus, Kundariya said the state governments are free to announce it to protect the interest of farmers.

Senior officials from agriculture and textile ministries as well as the chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) were present at the meeting.

The state-owned Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) was asked to open procurement centres at the earliest at places where prices have fallen below the MSP.

CCI, which has started also procurement in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, aims to procure about 20-25 lakh bales (of 170 kg each) in the 2015-16 marketing year, substantially less than the 87 lakh bales it procured last year.

Cotton prices, which were ruling at Rs 4,800 per quintal in July 2014, have declined to Rs 4,300 per quintal in October, but slightly higher than the current MSP.

Cotton prices fallen due to poor export demand, particularly from China. (SH)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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