According to USDA statistics, China has been the largest producer of cotton fiber in 2013-14 with 32 million 480 lb. bales, followed by India (29.5 million bales), USA (12.9 million bales) and Pakistan (9.5 million bales). In 2013, USA was the largest exporter of raw cotton with a share of 30.2% in the world raw cotton exports with a value of US$ 5.6 Billion. India was the second largest exporter with exports of worth US$ 4.5 Billion and share of 24.4%. The third largest exporter was Australia with exports worth of US$2.5 Billion and share 13.6%. Other top exporters included Brazil, Uzbekistan, Greece, Burkina Faso, Turkmenistan, Mali, Benin and Pakistan with shares of 6%, 3.3%, 2.7%, 2%, 1.7%, 1.5%, 1.3% and 1.2% respectively. Pakistan exported raw cotton of worth US$ 217 million in 2013.
China was the world’s largest importer of raw cotton with a value of around US$ 8.4 Billion and share of 44.8%. Turkey was the second largest importer, followed by Indonesia, Bangladesh, Viet Nam and Pakistan with shares of around 8.9%, 7.1%, 5.9%, 4.8% and 4% respectively. Pakistan imported raw cotton of worth US$ 757 million in 2013. Overall, Pakistan’s consumption of raw cotton is more than the country’s own production. Moreover, Pakistani cotton is mostly suitable for medium to coarse count yarns. Pakistan has to import raw cotton not only for the production of finer count yarns but also to make up the shortage of cotton required for the production of medium to coarse count yarns. USA and India had a raw cotton trade surplus of about US$ 5.6 Billion and US$ 4.1 Billion respectively while Pakistan was in a deficit of around US$ 540 million. Pakistan needs not only to increase per acre yield of cotton production but should also consider making use of un-utilized land for increasing the cotton output.