Sindh produces more cotton than Punjab this season


KARACHI – The Sindh province has surpassed Punjab in terms of cotton production as the economic observers see the flow of cotton arrivals having resumed with the arrival of Kharif season. According to data released by Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association, the cotton arrivals up till 1st of this month remained essentially stagnant, decreasing by a minor 0.31% YoY.

“We have extended our analysis to cover the impact of flood on the same and its expected impact on the economy as a whole,” said InvestCap analyst Muniba Saeed.

Despite the flood engulfing most of both Sindh and Punjab, the two main provinces endowing the country with its bread and butter crop cotton arrival remained unaffected at the level of 1,726k bales up till September 1 compared to 1,731k bales of last year. Agriculture contributes 21.4% to the country’s gross domestic products (GDP) and textile contributes 52% to the exports.

However, interestingly whereas the total pie remained the same size, a notable change was witnessed in the contribution from both provinces where, historically, Punjab contributes 70% to the total production of cotton in the country, the province contributed a meagre 37% in the production this season whereas Sindh supplied the remaining 63%.

Moreover, production from both provinces went in diverging directions, where production from Punjab slid by 33% YoY, arrival of cotton bales from Sindh shot up by 42% YoY. The decline in production of cotton bales in Punjab can be attributed to a number of factors.

Firstly, whereas the flood hit northern and southern Punjab, being the main area for cotton cultivation, remained mostly unaffected by the heavy rainfall.

“Due to decline in the area under cultivation for cotton in South Punjab this season and inadequate rains, which were insufficient for cotton cultivation, experienced, we saw a decline in production from the province,” said Muniba.

Despite inadequate rain witnessed in South Punjab so far, experts are expecting healthy cotton arrivals going forward during this season basing such judgment on the state of the present crop. The significant increase in production from Sindh this year, the analyst said, was due to lower production due to flood last year.

The country having produced 12.9mn bales in FY13, Cotton Crop Assessment Committee set an initial target of 13.255mn bales for FY14. However, keeping into consideration the impact of floods and the decline in area for cultivation of cotton in South Punjab, the same was revised to 12.65mn bales. As outlined above, the flood is expected to have little impact on cotton production this season. “We expect no major hurdle in achievement of this target,” said the analyst. – See more at: Courtesy Pakistan Today

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