Turkey is looking to produce 2.38 million tons of cotton this season, which is an increase of 2.6 per cent compared to last year’s production. However, cotton production still falls short of the Turkish textile industry’s requirements. As per a statement by TZOB, chairman Shams Bayraktar said despite the increase in production of cotton compared to last year, it still falls short of the textile industry’s requirement in the country. In 2012, Turkey spent around $2.5 billion on imports of cotton and was the second largest importer of cotton in the world, after China. The expected cotton production for the current year still remains behind the production achieved in 2011. Cotton production decreased by 10.1 per cent to 2.32 million tons in 2012 compared to the production in 2011, which was 2.58 million tons.
During the cotton harvest period of 1995 to 2012, overall production of cotton saw an increase of 61.6 per cent, whereas production of ginned cotton increased by 56.4 per cent in the country. During the same period, cotton acreage fell from 7.56 million hectares to 4.9 million hectares, indicating a decline of 35.4 per cent.
Cotton is a strategic product for Turkey, as millions of temporary workers, employers, dealers, and transport employees in the country are dependent on cotton to make a living.