No major trading activity was witnessed on the cotton market on Thursday despite easing of lockdown.

Market sources said that cotton trading will fully resume after Eid holidays. They also said that after the easing of the lockdown the demand of the textile products is increased to some extent but the trading of yarn and cotton will fully resume after Ramazan and Eid holidays.

Cotton Analyst Naseem Usman told that according to the May edition of Cotton Review published by Directorate of Marketing and Research Ministry of National Food Security and Research the sowing of cotton crop both in Punjab and Sindh is in progress. Area sown in Punjab as reported by Agriculture (Extension & AR) Punjab till 1st week of May 2020 was not satisfactory and recorded at 1.244 million acers which comprises only 25 percent of the tentative target and 21 percent less than previous year. Where's the area sown in Sindh witnessed an increase of 28 percent over last year, achieving 43 percent against target.

The main districts of Sindh which showed great performance against their target are Hyderabad 95 percent, Tando Muhammad Khan 95 percent, Tando Allah Yar 91 percent, Mirpurkhas 90 percent, Umer Kot 81 percent and Sanghar 81 percent, This year cotton sowing in Sindh is being reported on more area as compared to corresponding last year. Due to low germination of seeds, growers are applying increased seed rate per acre.

Recently a delegation of Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association headed by its chairman Mian Javed Sohail Rehmani called on federal minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhir Imam to discuss issue of buying of stock of 5 lac bales of cotton through Trading Corporation of Pakistan as well as issue of abolishing sales tax on Khal and issue of locust attack on cotton crop was discussed in detail. It is expected that result of the meeting will proved to be positive and all the issues will be resolved soon.

Naseem said that sources are also claiming that government may announce the support price of cotton after rethinking. It may be noted on May 7, 2020, ECC rejected a proposal of the Ministry of National Food Security and Research in which intervention price of seed cotton (Phutti) was proposed at Rs 4,224 per mound.

After that government had constituted a committe comprising of Federal Minister for National Food Security Syed Fakhir Imam, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Makhdoom Khusro Bakhthiyar and Advisor to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam. They have been tasked to look in to this matter and submit their proposals.

Sources said that Ministry of National Food Security will organise seminar on cotton in Islamabad after Eid. The seminar will be addressed by all the stake holders.

Naseem said that in some areas there is an extreme threat of attack of locusts but it is difficult to say anything before time. He also said that there are contradictory reports regarding sowing. Most of the reports were not positive. He said that both federal and provincial governments should take steps to save the cotton crop from the locust attack.

Naseem Usman said that Spot Rate remained unchanged at Rs 8600 per maund. The rate of cotton in Sindh and Punjab is in between Rs 7000 to Rs 8600 per maund. The polyester fiber was available at Rs 157 per kg.

The KCA Official Spot Rate for Local Dealings in Pakistan Rupees
                     FOR BASE GRADE 3 STAPLE LENGTH 1-1/16"
                    MICRONAIRE VALUE BETWEEN 3.8 TO 4.9 NCL
Rate              Ex-Gin   Upcountry   Spot Rate    Spot Rate    Difference
                    For      Price     Ex-Karachi  Ex. KHI. As   Ex-Karachi
                                                   on  20-05-2020
37.324 kg         8,600       160         8,760        8,760            NIL
40 kgs            9,217       171         9,388        9,388            NIL

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020