ICAC – The Cotton Supply Chain Continues to Suffer from COVID, Trade Tensions and a Sluggish Global Economy

Executive Summary

 Highlights from the November 2020 Cotton This Month include:

•             Global consumption is estimated at 24.4 million tonnes in 2020/21

•             Global production is anticipated to increase to 24.9 million tonnes in 2020/21

•             Production in the United States, Pakistan and West Africa is expected to decrease in 2020/21

•             Production in India and China is expected to increase in 2020/21

The Cotton Supply Chain Continues to Suffer from COVID, Trade Tensions and a Sluggish Global Economy

The entire world might be tired of the COVID pandemic and simply want to be done with it — but it is, sadly, far from done with the cotton industry. Production in 2020/21 (24.9 million tonnes) is projected to outpace consumption by 500000 tonnes, and many major producers are expected to see their totals drop in the coming year, including the USA, Brazil, Pakistan and West Africa.

Inclement weather and trade conflicts could compound the challenges in some regions, especially the USA, which not only is experiencing an unusually active hurricane season but also is still engaged in a trade war with China.

But as with most dark clouds, there is a silver lining too. Brazil, for example, might be projected to have a 6 % decrease in production, but its total production should reach 2.8 million tonnes — roughly double the size of the crop it was producing only five years ago. India and China, the world’s top two producers, also are expected to increase their totals in the coming season.

The Secretariat’s current projection for the year-end 2020/21 average of the A Index is 69.3 US Cents per pound this month.

Cotton This Month is published at the beginning of the month with the Cotton Update published mid-month. The Cotton Update, which is included in the Cotton This Month subscription, is a mid-month report with updated information on supply/demand estimates and prices. The next Cotton Update will be released on November 16, 2020. The next Cotton This Month will be released on December 1, 2020.

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Please contact the author, Ms. Lihan Wei, with questions on this report.