The Southern India Mills' Association (SIMA) has appealed to the Union Government not to permit any further export of raw cotton. In a memorandum to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, association Chairman J. Thulasidharan has said that there were reports that the Union Agriculture Minister had recommended further export of 1.5 million bales of cotton and increase the export ceiling to 7 million bales for the current season. Since the beginning of the cotton season (October 2010-September 2011), about 55 lakh bales were exported.
Mr. Thulasidharan said the cotton advisory board estimated the production this season to be 312 lakh bales and the closing stock at the end of the season would be just 27.5 lakh bales. Cotton prices that were nearly Rs.39,000 a candy in October 2010 had shot up to Rs.63,000 now. Farmers had already sold most of the produce and any further increase in exports would benefit only the traders. The increase would lead to further hike in prices and this would be unviable for the textile mills. “Any further raw cotton export will be disastrous for the country's cotton textile industry,” he said.