Pakistan’s cotton output decreased by over 34 percent year-on-year (YoY), according to the latest fortnightly data released by the Pakistan Cotton Ginner’s Association (PCGA).
Total cotton arrivals in Pakistan slid to 4.875 million bales as of March 1, 2023, compared to 7.44 million bales in the corresponding period last year, recording a difference of 2.56 million bales and a drop of 34 percent.
As per the PCGA data, cotton arrivals reported a big decline in both cotton-producing provinces of Punjab and Sindh.
As of March 1, cotton arrivals in Punjab were 2.99 million bales compared to 3.93 million bales in the same period last year, a decrease of 0.93 million bales or 23.7 percent YoY. On a monthly basis, cotton arrivals recorded an increase of 3.6 percent as compared to 2.89 million on February 1.
Similarly, cotton arrivals in Sindh reached 1.88 million bales as of March 1 compared to 3.51 million bales reported in the same period last year, a massive decline of 1.63 million bales or 46.5 percent.
Overall, Pakistan’s cotton production is expected to decline further, especially in Sindh and Balochistan due to last year’s devastating floods and the government’s decision to withdraw tax relief from the agriculture industry for wooing the International Monetary Fund (IMF). High-priced electricity rates will jack up tube well bills due to the new IMF taxes, exerting substantial pressure on the already struggling farming sector.