Pakistan set to miss 14.1 million bales cotton output target
The country is going to miss the cotton production target
this year as well and that too by a huge margin, which would
further push the agriculture growth of the country into the
According to Ministry of Textiles, a target of 14.1 million
bales was set for the year 2016-17. However, cotton sowing fell
short by 20.82% in Punjab, leading to overall 15.78% less sowing
at the national level.
Since 2009, cotton production is on the decline while other
competing crops outputs are increasing. In 2009-10, the cotton
production was 12.91 million bales, in 2010-11 it reduced to
11.460 million bales, next year it was 13.59 million bales, and
after gradually decreasing every year the cotton production
decreased to 10.07 million bales in the year 2015-16.
In the meanwhile, the farmers started shifting to other crops
from cotton to the production of competitive crops like
sugarcane, rice and maize increased during last five years.
The major reason for the lower cotton sowing area was low
cotton prices during the previous year (2015-16), said Dr Khalid
Abdullah, Cotton Commissioner, Ministry of Textiles.
Highlighting efforts of the government to support farmers in
improving cotton production, and measures have been taken for
ample supply of quality cotton seed and loans.
Quoting State Bank, he said an amount of Rs 700 billion has
been allocated for agricultural loans to be disbursed by
commercial banks and micro finance institutions. Out of this
target, Rs 10 billion has so far been disbursed among 35,000
cotton farmers of Punjab and Sindh.
The SBP has also launched mandatory crop insurance policy for
five major crops, including wheat, rice, sugarcane, cotton and
maize, he said. He said Zarai Taraqiati Bank’s target for cotton
crop-specific loans has been a target at 60% of total loans.