The Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) has procured about 5 lakh bales this season of which 4 lakh bales have been procured at minimum support price (MSP) and the remaining 1 lakh bales as part of its commercial operations, senior officials at the CCI said.
With cotton prices firming up to around Rs 5,300 per quintal, farmers are finding it more lucrative to sell cotton in the open market. Officials at CCI therefore feel that the intervention of the corporation may not be required for a better part of the season unless arrivals increase and prices fall below MSP. CCI, however, is likely to continue with its commercial operations during the ongoing season for some of its existing buyers.
With CCI having already procured around 5 lakh bales, the target is to procure another 5 lakh bales, officials said. CCI already has some buyers on its list with whom it has reached agreements to sell cotton. Cotton prices have firmed up on lesser availability of the commodity owing to the pink bollworm attack.
According to the Cotton Association of India (CAI), the crop arrivals in the country up to December 31 have crossed 147.75 lakh bales in this season. By the same time last year, arrivals were about 108 lakh bales. Since cotton rates have gone up in the country by 10% in the last one month, the earlier set target of cotton export of 63 lakh bales looks difficult now. Hence, cotton export figures have been reduced and revised from the earlier 63 lakh bales to 55 lakh bales, said CAI President Atul Ganatra.