The Union Textile Minister, Dr. K S Rao swept away the audiences while other dignitaries like Ashok Tanwar - MP Sirsa, Padma Bhushan SP Oswal – Chairman Vardhaman Group, AB Joshi – Textile Commissioner, Mohit Shah – President ICA, UK, Mahesh Sharda – President NICAL, Antony Tancredi – CEO, Allenberg Cotton & Global Head Louis Drefyfus Cotton Platform, USA and Ray Butler – MD Cottonlook UK, addressed the filled auditorium of around 1,000 people adding to value chain of Indian Cotton Industry.
Dr. KS Rao said that everybody in the cotton industry, whether farmers, weavers, spinners, ginners, mill owners, traders or exporters are working for individual benefits wherein the country today needs integrated approach towards sustainability and growth. Self-centred approach is hampering the overall growth and we are thus far from our efficiency in increasing per acre yield.
He insisted on not focusing too much on raw cotton exports but to focus on adding value through each steps of finished goods production. Dr. Rao invited the foreign investors to set up manufacturing facilities ensuring full government support. KS Rao said that all the stakeholders in individual capacities should invest in research and developments and anybody can reach the textile ministry for up to 50% government aid.
Indian Cotton Conference 2013 is the first national level conference in the Cotton Industry and people from all over the country participated enthusiastically. Shri SP Oswal was awarded with Life Time Achievement Award for his 47 years of contribution to Indian Cotton Industry.
Special award was given to Mohit Shah for becoming youngest and first Indian President of International Cotton Conference, UK. 9 distinguished awards were given to Navratna Cotton Entrepreneurs and 17 farmers from across the country were awarded special recognition.
SP Oswal said that major challenges in Cotton industry today are price equilibrium, adulteration of seeds, contamination of cotton and ginning practices, and rising labour cost. He said that high quality Indian yarns are recognised worldwide. While we are world No.1 in spinning segment, we export less than 4% of finished fabric as compared to 28% from China. Oswal insisted on increasing per acre production and encouraging machinery practices in cotton picking over hand picking.
Ray Butler presented on the World Cotton Scenario. Other discussions included challenges for Indian Textile Industry on the global stage and emerging cotton scenario by 2020.
Northern India Cotton Association Limited (NICAL)
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