Indian cotton gains support from weaker rupee

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New Delhi, March 1 (IANS) Indian cotton has gained support from the weakening of the rupee against the US dollar as this has accelerated its export demand, the Cotton Association of India (CAI) said on Thursday.

India has shipped around 30 lakh bales (170 kg each) of cotton as of now while contracts for exports have been signed for 35 lakh bales till date in the current season, CAI President Atul Ganatara told IANS.

According to him, Indian cotton is the cheapest in the international market. Therefore, overseas buyers are interested to source it from India.

“Some of our traditional buyers like Bangladesh, Pakistan, Vietnam, and Turkey are fulfilling most of their requirements of cotton from India,” said Ganatara.

The CAI has pegged India’s cotton exports at 55 lakh bales in the ongoing 2017-18 cotton year (October-September) as against 63 lakh bales a year ago. The cotton year in India begins in October and continues till September next year.

Gantara said: “This figure can be easily achieved and it may surge if the current trend of export demand continues in the coming months.”

As per the CAI’s recent projection, India may import 20 lakh bales of cotton. Ganatara put the figure at 17 lakh bales.

Ganatara said: “Now, import figures may fall as difference between international prices and domestic prices is around 10 cents per pound which will discourage local ginners to source cotton from overseas.

Currently, West African countries offer cotton for shipping to India at 93 cents per pound (FOB) for July delivery while domestic cotton is priced at 83 cents per pound.

US cotton is offered for shipment at 95-97 cents per pound while Australian cotton costs 98 cents per pound for July shipments.

The domestic currency is ruling near a three-month low as it opened at 65.20 rupees per dollar on Thursday against 65.18 rupees per dollar while the previous low was 65.31 rupees per dollar recorded on November 16.

(P.K. Jha can be contacted at [email protected])

–IANS

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