Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh has overtaken China as the world’s top cotton importer with expanding global market share significantly thanks to strong demand from apparel makers, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said.
The overall cotton import increased by 500,000 bales to 6.2 million, reinforcing Bangladesh’s position as the world’s largest importer in 2015/16, said the USDA last week. One bale weighs 480 pounds.
Meanwhile, consumption is raised a more moderate 300,000 bales, to 6.1 million, as market reports attest to growth of spinning, according to the USDA.
For the 2016/17 year, the USDA has forecast imports to increase by 400,000 bales to 6.3 million, and use to 6.4 million. This raises Bangladesh’s share of global imports to just over 18 per cent, more than double that seen five years before.
“This large change in Bangladesh’s imports in turn impacts various cotton exporters, especially West African origins such as Benin and Burkina Faso, and Central Asian countries such as Uzbekistan,” the USDA said in its ‘Cotton: World Markets and Trade’ report for October 2016.
Indeed, demand in Bangladesh for cotton of Uzbek origin has proven to be substantially stronger than was previously believed, resulting in a substantial upward revision to the 2015/16 Uzbek export estimate, it added.
On the other hand, China dropped behind Bangladesh in the 2015/16 year, importing 4.4 million cotton bales compared to 8.3 million the year before.
For the 2016/17 year, China is forecast to import 4.5 million bales.
Ending stocks are down significantly for 2016/17, due largely to a sharp decline in beginning stocks, the USDA added.
Carry-over stocks from 2015/16 are reduced due to adjustments to consumption estimates for China and Bangladesh in previous years.
Consumption for China was raised in previous years as closer examination indicated that stocks carried into 2015/16 were lower than previously estimated.
Production for 2016/17 is raised due mostly to a significant increase for Australia.
Trade is higher due to the increased consumption estimate for Bangladesh increasing import demand and very high early-season imports for India.
As a result, exports for the United States and Australia are boosted.
The US production is down slightly, coupled with higher exports, ending stocks down sharply.
The US season-average farm price forecast is raised one cent to 64 cents/pound.
2016/17 TRADE OUTLOOK
Major Importers:
•Bangladesh is up 400,000 bales to 6.3 million on higher domestic use.
•India is raised 500,000 bales to 1.5 million on very strong early-season imports.
•Indonesia is up 100,000 bales to 2.9 million on higher domestic use.

Major Exporters:
•The United States is raised 500,000 bales to 12.0 million on stronger global import demand.
•Brazil is cut 500,000 bales to 2.9 million on a smaller crop.
•Australia is raised 800,000 bales to 4.2 million on a significantly larger crop.
•Benin is up 100,000 bales to 700,000 due to larger carry-in stocks.
•Mali is increased 100,000 bales to 1.2 million on a larger crop.

In Bangladesh, most of the spinning mills have expended their productions capacity through BMRE to make the industry viable and competitive both local and global markets, the industry insiders said while explaining the higher import in 2015/16.
They also hinted that the rising trend of cotton imports may continue in the comings years if the ideal spindles to go into products to meet the growing demand for textile and clothing for local as well as exports.
Currently, around 400 spinning are in operation across the country.

BBN/SSR/AD