The Cotton Crop Assessment Committee (CCAC) on Wednesday told over 8.46 million bales of cotton production was expected during current season.
The committee met here with Syed Fakhar Imam, Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research in the chair.
Representatives of cotton growers, provincial agriculture departments, associations and senior officials of the NFS&R also attended the meeting.
The minister welcomed the participants and thanked for their participation and invited them all to share their feedback and recommendations for the development of cotton crop in the country.
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Fakhar Imam was told that the province of Sindh expected production of 3.5 million bales in this season.
He was briefed that the climate in this season had been much better than the last season and due to less rainfall overall production was expected to increase.
The production of cotton in Punjab is expected to touch 4.5 million bales at an increase of approximately 8.5% from last year.
Overall cotton production is expected to reach 8.46 million bales.
The minister was briefed that the year 2020 saw 398.6 mm rainfall which had a devastating impact on the production whereas this year the rainfall was 78.6 mm which has improved the prospect of overall production.
Cotton area declined by 28% from 3.07 to 2.22m.hec
Pakistan is losing $2b directly and $8b per annum due to low production of cotton.Increase in production will have impact of $1b per 1m bales and a 7 times multiplier impact on fiscal flows in economyhttps://t.co/jYx9tqrD6n
— All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (@APTMAofficial) January 17, 2021
Furthermore, he was told that the attack of Mealybug and Whitefly and CLCuV remained significant which had adversely affected the production of cotton.
Fakhar Imam said that it was imperative that awareness amongst farmers was raised regarding contamination control.
He said that through proper chemical sprays, the quality and quantity of cotton production could be enhanced.
The minister said that the government would be proactive with the provision of quality seed to facilitate the farmers.
He said that the present government after 8 years set intervention price of Rs 5000 per 40kg, which encouraged the grower to invest in crop management and harvest high yields.
Read more: Cotton: Handling the White Gold Crisis of Pakistan
The growers from Sindh and Punjab also praised this act of the government and requested to replicate the same in sugarcane and wheat.
Fakhar Imam said that the government had performed exceptionally well in the last season as Pakistan had the highest production in the top 5 crops including wheat with record production of 27.5 million tonnes.
He said that the government aimed to transform cotton production as well.
The minister said that the PTI government was supporting the cotton grower in every capacity.
He shared that there was a need of paradigm shift in the yield of this crop as it was one of the major factor of production in our industry.
The minister said that small holders would only be able to grow wheat if the quality inputs were timely available and in the range of the farmer’s access.
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He stressed on establishing linkages between the scientists and farmers mainly to minimize the gap between the results of research farm with that of the actual field.
Fakhar Imam said that the government wished to ensure that the concern of all stakeholders are heard and addressed.