MULTAN: The Cotton Crop Assessment Committee (CCAC) of the Ministry of Textile Industry has assessed that national cotton production would be around 11.39 million bales this year including a contribution of 7.3 million bales expected from Punjab.
The production assessment figure was announced by Textile Industry Federal Secretary Hassan Iqbal after consulting all stakeholders including provinces at the second meeting of the CCAC in Islamabad, stated a press release issued by the spokesman for Central Cotton Research Institute (CCRI) Multan Friday.
Cotton Commissioner Dr Khalid Abdullah gave a detailed briefing to the participants on the prevalent situation of the crop with regards to impact of weather and the damage caused by pests, particularly pink bollworm and white fly.
The meeting was informed that the cotton area in Punjab was reduced by 21% this year compared to the previous year. However, the crop area in Sindh increased by 2%. The overall reduction in the cotton area of the country was recorded at 15% and the same would impact national production.
Progressive farmers suggested that a campaign be launched for awareness among the farming community on the damages that can be caused by harmful pests and rains and ways to counter the threats to reduce further damage.
Director Crop Reporting Service Punjab conveyed the production assessment of the Punjab province through SMS while his counterpart from Sindh conveyed production assessment statistics through telephone, stated the release.
Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association (PCGA) chairman said that in his opinion Punjab may deliver 7.5 to 8.0 million bales this year.
Iqbal, while chairing the meeting, said that keeping in view the present situation of the cotton crop and the opinion of the stakeholders, the country is expected to get 11.39 million bales of cotton in 2016-17.
Giving province-wise production assessment, he said that Punjab is expected to produce 7.3 million bales while Sindh would contribute 3.7 million bales.
Production of another 39,000 bales is expected from Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. It may be noted that the assessment was based on the weight of one cotton bale at 170 kilogrammes.