INDICATIVE prices for cotton for the 2018/19 harvest season will be 1,100/- per kilogramme, slightly down from 1,200/- of the previous season due to global decline of cotton price, the government has announced.
Launching the new cotton harvest season in Igunga District, Tabora Region yesterday, the Minister for Agriculture, Dr Charles Tizeba, said there would be a slight decline in prices this season due to low prices of the crop in the world market.
“Cotton prices in the global market are low and thus in the 2018/19 season the price will be 1,100/- per kilogramme,” he said, adding that most of the cotton sold to the world market was raw, thus fetching very low prices. “It is from this backdrop that the government is emphasizing industrial development to ensure that all the cotton produced in the country is consumed locally.
” The minister said the government would pay 30bn/- debt owed by farmers from purchase of insecticides and announced in the 2019/20 cotton season, farmers will be given for free cotton seeds, insecticides and ropes for planting cotton.
Tanzania Cotton Board (TCB) Director General, Marco Mtunga, said cotton production in this season has increased by 400 per cent to 600,000 tonnes compared to 132,000 tonnes last year. “Due to increased cotton production, it should be ensured that farmers get reliable markets to sell all the cotton produced,” he said.
He said also that land used for cotton production increased to 3 million hectares from 650,000 hectares with 26,500 tonnes of cotton seeds used.
He said all the cotton this season will be bought through the Agricultural Marketing Co-operative Societies (AMCOS). All the regional commissioners, district commissioners, co-operative societies and registrar of cooperatives should ensure that farmers are paid accordingly.
He said all the farmers’ payments should be paid through bank accounts within three days after selling their cotton to the cooperative societies and all buyers are supposed to buy from cooperative societies only.
Cotton is being produced in 17 regions including Mwanza, Simiyu, Shinyanga, Geita, Mara, Kagera, Tabora, Singida, Kigoma, Katavi, Dodoma, Morogoro, Coast, Tanga, Kilimanjaro, Manyara and Iringa.