India likely to be the leading producer of Cotton in 2015-16: USDA

By accounting for 26.5% of total production, India is expected to be the leading producer of cotton during 2015-16, says the United States Department of Agriculture

Sai Nikesh | The Dollar Business

The global production of cotton in 2015-16 is expected to decline 6% over the previous season to 111.3 million bales, said the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), in its latest release. By accounting for 26.5% of total production, India is expected to be the leading producer of cotton during 2015-16, the report added. However, according to the USDA’s projections, India’s cotton production during 2015-16 will decline for the second consecutive year and is expected to come down to 37.15 million bales due to delayed sowing, weather and low price realization, among other reasons. Meanwhile, statements by K N Vishwanathan, Vice-President, Indian Cotton Federation (ICF), remain in contrast to the USDA projections. Speaking to The Dollar Business, he said, “Concerns over monsoon, that are making rounds all over, are not going to affect cotton production in 2015-16. Cotton production in the country is expected to be good this year and will also be positive in the coming year.” “Supply-wise trend continues to be good, consumption is manageable and prices are also under control as a result of government’s moves like increasing of Minimum Support Price (MSP). But, the real concern is about movement of goods, where challenges a plenty in case of yarn and cloth sales, garment exports,” he noted. While Government of India projected India’s cotton production for 2014-15 marketing season (August-July) at 35.3 million bales, the USDA projected at 38 million bales. In India, farmers’ decision over planting aimed at expanding cotton acreage became difficult as a result of drop in prices of competing crops in various states, the report noted. According to the USDA report, cotton production in China is expected to witness 10% decline due to lower trends in cropping area and China’s yield is expected to rise to a record-level as a result of area-shift to high-yielding Xinjiang region of the country. The report further noted that Pakistan’s cotton production in current year is expected to decrease by 6% over the previous year and Brazil’s crop is also projected to decline by 4% over the previous year. According to the report, world’s cotton mill usage is expected to grow to 115.3 million bales, 3% higher than that of 111.5 million bales as expected to be consumed in 2014-15.    

June 19, 2015 | 7:21 pm IST.