FIRST MEETING OF COTTON CROP ASSESSMENT COMMITTEE (CCAC) FOR THE COTTON CROP SEASON 2014-15
October 15, 2014: First meeting of Cotton Crop Assessment Committee (CCAC) for the cotton crop season 2014-15 was held under the chairmanship of Ms. Rukhsana Shah, Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry. The meeting was attended by representatives from Pakistan Central Cotton Committee, Pakistan Cotton Standards Institute, All Pakistan Textile Mills Association, Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association, Karachi Cotton Association, Trading Corporation of Pakistan, Provincial research and extension officials, and cotton farmers.
The representative from Crop Reporting Service Department, Government of the Punjab stated that target for cotton area was set at 2.428 million hectare during the current season, while cotton was sown at 2.352 million hectares depicting 3.13 percent less than the target while it was 6.97 percent more than that of last year sown area (2.199 million hectares). However, the current year floods damaged standing cotton at around 86,000 acres and by reducing flood affected area from the sown area, the actual cotton area stands at 2.266 million hectares. He further stated that cotton crop in the province is much better than last year and CLCuV is also significantly less. The province is expected to produce around 9.53 million bales of 170 kgs despite damages due to floods.
The representative from Agriculture Department Sindh stated that cotton sowing was targeted at 0.650 million hectares while it is sown on 0.595 million hectares depicting a shortfall of 8.46 percent, while it is 4.75 percent more than the sown area during last year (0.568 million hectares).
The representative from Agriculture Department, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa stated that cotton crop was sown at an area of 3300 hectares. He stated that the farmers of the area are not much educated in cotton crop management. He also stated that due to non-existence of a cotton ginning factory in the province, farmers are reluctant to grow cotton.
Farmer members from Punjab stressed for intervention of Trading Corporation of Pakistan at earliest as cotton season is ending sharply and benefit of intervention price for seed cotton must be assured for farmers. Moreover, they also demanded to withdraw recent levy of tax @ 5% on cottonseed cake to reduce the higher cost of cottonseed cake for feeding animals especially in the flood-affected areas secondly it will help in raising cotton prices.
The Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry stressed upon scientists to check the effects of pesticides in oil and cake produced through cotton crop by applying number of poisonous sprays. She stated that since Pakistan is signatory to various international laws/obligations and we must focus on producing better cotton which could not only benefit farmers in reducing cost of production but could also be exported at higher prices. The Secretary also directed to immediately initiate a pilot project for construction of a cotton ginning factory in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to overcome the problem of cotton marketing in the province. She assured the farmers that all-out efforts will be made for earliest possible induction of TCP for procuring seed cotton so that farmers could benefit from the ECC decision.
The House unanimously agreed to assess the cotton crop size during the year 2014-15 as below:
Punjab : 9.5380 million bales
Sindh : 3.6000 million bales
KP : 0.0015 million bales
Balochistan : 0.4000 million bales
PAKISTAN : 13.5395 million bales