‘Pakistan needs to import 3.5m cotton bales this year’

Pakistan would need to import 3.5 million more bales worth Rs 100 billion to meet demand of local spinning and weaving sector. This was stated by the chairman Cotton Brokers Forum Naseem Usman while talking to APP here Tuesday.

He said that more than 2 million bales have been damaged in the recent floods. He said the country would harvest 11.8 million bales of cotton this season while the local consumption is estimated at 15.5 million bales which means that the country would require to import 3.5 to 3.7 million bales this season.

Usman said that most of this cotton would come from neighbouring India which has a surplus of 8 million bales this season. He said that although there is no shortage of cotton in the world this year so far, its prices are high in the international market. “There is a fear that international cotton prices would go up on the rising demand from Pakistan.

Currently, price of Indian cotton is hovering around 96 cents per pound, but it will go up on demand surge”, he noted. Usman said that Pakistan has purchased 1.4 million bales from India, Brazil, USA and Central Asia early in the year at an average price of 87 cents per pound. He said that Brazil was selling its cotton at $1 per pound. At this price, Pakistani importers would be incurring an additional cost Rs 600 to Rs 800 on the import of each bale of cotton, he added. Usman pointed out that the local price was ranging between Rs 6,400 to 6,500 per maund while the import price would come to 7,200 7,300 per maund.