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Pakistan's cotton sowing acreage to grow 10pc
24
Jun '11
In view of the ongoing cotton sowing season, the Pakistan Central Cotton Committee (PCCC) has estimated the total area under cotton cultivation in the country to rise by 10 percent over last year.

According to the PCCC, the crop has already been sown on 78.23 million acres of land, which has surpassed the last year's total sowing acreage by 3.93 percent.

Cotton has been sown on 62.92 million acres of land in Punjab, which is 1.86 percent higher than the official target set for the current year and 0.67 percent above last year's total cotton sown area in the province.

Experts believe that if Pakistan achieves its set target of 15 million cotton bales this year, it could reverse the trend of waning cotton production in Punjab, which is one of the country's biggest and prime agricultural regions.

During the past three years, a fall of around 12 percent has been noted in the Punjab province's cotton output, which has dropped from 8.8 million bales to 7.8 million bales now.

According to the experts, the Pakistani textile industry would have lesser access to world cotton next year due to expected lower production worldwide. Hence, it becomes imperative for Pakistan to boost its cotton production.

Experts believe that cotton output would decrease this year in India, China and the United States – world's leading cotton producing countries.

In north India, after introduction of over 270 Bt hybrids, the leaf curl virus, which affected three million bales of cotton in Pakistan, has once again started re-appearing and is becoming a major issue for cotton cultivators. Besides, bollworms have also started resurfacing on Bt cotton.

China's cotton yield is expected to be affected by floods and famines in various regions and also owing to the farmers' growing preference for grain over cotton, which is a labour-intensive crop.

In the United States too, the present adverse weather conditions are dampening the spirits of cotton cultivators and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has decreased its May crop estimates by one million bales.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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