India To Set Up Cotton Council With Representation From Various Central Ministries To Improve Fibre's Productivity
Union Minister of Textiles Piyush Goyal has announced formation of Cotton Council of India with representation from Ministry of Textiles, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Finance, Commerce and Industry, Cotton Corporation of India and Cotton Research Institute.
The Council will holistically look at ways to improve the fibre's productivity that has declined over the years, reports Economic Times.
The Council will be headed by Suresh Bhai Kotak, a renowned veteran cotton man, according to a Textiles Ministry release.
The first meeting of proposed cotton council has been scheduled on 28 May to discuss, deliberate and prepare a robust action plan for bringing out a tangible improvement in the field.
The announcement by Goyal came during a meeting with stakeholders from cotton value chain.
In the meeting, a cross-section of views and suggestions were deliberated for softening cotton and yarn prices on urgent basis, to address unprecedented price rise witnessed in the current season.
It was pointed out that cotton productivity is the biggest challenge in the country, resulting thereby in less cotton production despite largest area under cotton cultivation.
The minister emphasised upon the need for making available better quality of seeds to improve productivity of cotton farmers.
Addressing the meeting, Goyal gave a clear and loud message to all stakeholders to resolve cotton and yarn price issue, in the spirit of collaboration rather than competition and super profiteering, without pushing government to intervene as it may have long term impact on cotton value chain.
He also emphasised the need of holding hands of cotton farmers who are the weakest part of cotton value chain, besides extending all possible support to stakeholders engaged in the backward and forward integration through out of box thinking at this critical juncture.
Pointing out that government is committed to protect the interests of cotton farmers, spinners and weavers, the minister assured to actively consider the demand of the spinning sector for exemption from import duty on those import contracts in which bills of lading is issued upto 30 September 2022 to overcome current cotton shortage and logistic issues.
Goyal also appealed to the spinning and trading community to ensure hassle free supply of cotton and yarn first to the domestic industry and only surplus cotton and yarn should be diverted for exports.
He cautioned that export should not be at the cost of domestic industry which is the largest generator of employment in the country.
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