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Govt must attend to low cotton production & decline in sowing area
Jun '08
Cotton sowing area has been on a persistent decline due to insufficient water supply, substandard cotton seeds, power failure, shortage of fertilizers and rice cultivation proving more lucrative.

Stake holders in the sector have lamented that seed sowing has fallen by about 50 percent due to various reasons. Keeping in mind these present situations, it is likely that the sowing area may decline by at least 50 percent in the forthcoming year.

Government had set the sowing target at 7.8 million acres but unfortunately the sector could not even achieve four million acre area.

The direct impact of these dismal conditions can be seen on the production front where cotton yield remained leveled at 11.6 million bales in 2007-08 against the Government target of 14.1 million bales.

Dr Kadir Bux Baloch, Agricultural Development Commissioner in Ministry of Food, Agriculture & Livestock, told Fibre2fashion, “It is still early to comment about less sowing of cotton in the country as the main three months of cotton sowing in Pakistan are April, May & June. Sowing is still in progress. We are targeting to reach 14 million bales in production this year and the figures would only increase in the subsequent years.

Government of Pakistan is also expected to intervene and lend support to cotton growers. In the year 2006-07, it provided a subsidy of Rs200 per bag of 50 kg of phosphate and potash fertilizers to encourage balanced use of these chemicals. However, no such aid had been granted this year.

Low production of cotton would be no less than a catastrophe for the entire textile industry and it is high time that the matter is seriously taken into consideration.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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