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Sharp drop in Shandong cotton imports in Jan-Feb

Mar '07
According to the statistics from Qingdao Customs, in the first two months of 2007, Shandong ports imported 102,000 tons cotton, worth of US $140 million, declining 57.7 percent and 57.4 percent, respectively, over the same period last year.

Trade mode was mainly focused on the imports for bonded area storage and processing trade. Bonded Zone imports and processing trade imports were 35,000 tons and 32 thousand tons, respectively, down 21.1 percent and 68.8 percent, together accounting for 66.3 percent of the total imports.

General trade imports and bonded warehouses imports were 18,000 tons and 16,000 tons, respectively, down 69.8 percent and 50.7 percent.

India was the largest source for imported cotton. Total imports from India reached 48,000 tons, an increase of 43.9 percent, accounting for 47.1 percent of the total cotton imports. Imports from Burkina Faso were 18,000 tons, an increase of 2.3 times.

Imports from the US were 16,000 tons, representing a decrease of 70.1 percent. Imports from these countries accounted for 80.4 percent of the total imports through Shandong ports.

The major reasons for the substantial decrease in cotton imports:

First, bumper cotton harvest quickened cotton purchase and sales in domestic cotton market. According to the China Cotton Association statistics, in 2006 China harvested 6.73 million tons cotton, a growth of 17.8 percent over the previous year, an all-time high.

Second, the state controlled the release of import quotas, and increased import sliding tax, in order to protect domestic market and growers' interest, so cotton imports were inhibited.

Third, the textile industry was less interested in importing cotton due to sufficient stock made before the Spring Festival. Cotton enterprises generally procure inventory in advance of two to three months.

In addition, by the end of last year, the state released the remaining quotas of 2006, most cotton enterprises imported a large quantity of cotton to add inventory at the end of last year. They had sufficient inventory early this year, which also affected cotton imports.

Fibre2fashion, News Desk - China

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