Xinjiang Cotton Sees Bumper Year

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The cotton harvest from more than 30 million mu (2 million hectares) of land has been acquired in Northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, as the buying season is drawing to a close, with higher crop yields and incomes for cotton farmers indicating a prosperous industry, despite slander and crackdown by the US, industry insiders said.

“Recent changes in the international trade situation have brought new challenges to the development of the cotton industry. But changes in external factors will not hinder the high quality, sustainable development of China’s cotton industry,” Wang Jianhong, vice president and secretary general of the China Cotton Association (CCA), believes.

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The CCA said last week that the “domestic cotton price spread based upon quality,” and the cotton acquisition season was drawing to a close.

Industry insiders said that the mechanisation rate of cotton picking in Xinjiang has continued to increase, and the quality of Xinjiang cotton is also rising with thorough, fine management from seed sifting to planting and fertilising. The efficiency of the industry chain has also been optimised, despite the US’ crackdown campaign.

Chinese consumers can buy clothes in March made from Xinjiang cotton harvested in November 2021, said a member enterprise of the China Cotton Industry Alliance (CCIA). According to the CCIA, it only takes 90 days from cotton harvesting to fabric completion, which would directly enter the assembly line of clothing enterprises.

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China’s total output of cotton reached 5.95 million tons in the 2020-2021 harvest year, according to the China Cotton Textile Association (CCTA).  Of the total, 5.13 million tons came from Xinjiang, accounting for 87% of domestic cotton output in 2021, statistics from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.

Total demand for cotton in China is about 7.8 million tons, with about 1.85 million tons relying on imports, mainly from India, Australia and other countries, read a report released by the CCTA in December.

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According to the NBS, Xinjiang’s cotton yield per hectare reached 2,046.4 kilograms in 2021, and the income of cotton-planting farmers was more than 1,500 yuan per mu ($15.6 per hectare).

Xinjiang cotton accounts for 67% of domestic consumption.

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