COIMBATORE: Textile mills have started to import cotton from West Africa and the US as the landed costs are on par with the prevailing market price in the Country.
The textile mills have contracted to import about 15 lakh bales of cotton as its prices are on the rise in the Country, industry officials said.
"There is a spurt in import contracts as domestic and imported cotton prices are more or less at same levels," said K Selvaraju, Secretary General, Southern India Mills' Association (SIMA).
"Textile mills had been entering into contracts to import cotton, mostly from West Africa, for the past couple of days," said Atul P Asher, Secretary, Indian Cotton Federation (ICF).
"Imported cotton appears to be attractive due to better yarn realisation, productivity and quality," said M Senthilkumar, Chairman, SIMA. While the Cotton Advisory Board (CAB), which comprises representatives from the textile industry, trade, ginners and Government officials, has estimated that cotton imports would be 17 lakh bales in 2016-17 season (October-September), industry officials said it would be at least double that projection.
Exports are also likely to be lower than CAB estimates as desi cotton prices are not currently attractive in the international market, he said. Exports would be only around 40 lakh bales, compared to 50 lakh bales estimated by CAB, the SIMA Chairman said.