Cotton council to discuss measures for crop promotion

The Restructuring Committee of Pakistan Central Cotton Committee (PCCC) is likely to meet this week for considering and approve the proposals and suggestions of its sub-committee in order to streamline the working of PCCC for the promotion of major cash crop of the country as well as development of local textile industry in the country.

In this regard PCCC had formed a sub-committee, which was assigned a task to prepare proposals and seek suggestions from all relevant stakeholders for making smooth all the operations of central committee including research and development of new cotton seed varieties to enhance per acre crop output in the country, said Cotton Commissioner in the Ministry of Textile Industry Dr Khalid Abdullah.

Talking to APP here, he said that the sub-committee has finalized its recommendations and proposals, which would be submitted in meeting of the main committee for approval. Dr abdullah informed that Ministry of Textile Industry had constituted a committee for restructuring the PCCC, in order to enhance the performance of the body as well as expedite research and developmental activities to promote cotton crop and cotton value added sector of the country.

The restructuring committee, he said was comprised of four members of National Assembly including Chaudhry Asad-ur-Rahman, Chaudhry Iftikhar Nazir, Sheikh Fayyaz-ud-din and Sajid Mehdi. Secretary Ministry of Textile Industry and two members of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) were also the members of restructuring committee.

He informed that the committee has recommended to collect cotton cess from textile mills through collectors of the respective district as per Cess Act 1923 in order to streamline the financial matters of the committee. Besides, it has recommended for keeping other testing fees and charges unchanged to promote the textile value addition sector of the country as well as enhancing the cotton crop output across the crop growing areas of the country, he added.

The committee also recommended the PCCC to multiply only early generation seed of popular varieties and multiplication may be done through provincial authorities or through private sector to ensure availability of seed for cotton growers. He said that it had also recommend that PCCC would auction its seed varieties through open competitive process in order to multiply the seed varieties to enhance per acre crop output in the country, adding that the committee also suggested for hiring a consultant to finalize the auction process and frame the details in this regard.

He further said that All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) was asked to share name of some consultant to develop the programme, besides the APTMA was also asked to discuss the matter of non-payment of cess with their members and resolve the issue on priority.

Cotton Commissioner said that the committee has recommended that the posts of vice-president and chief executive officer should not be separated and vice-president will also work as CEO, adding that it was recommended that vice president or CEO should only be an expert, well experienced in cotton and cotton research hired through open competitive process.

The committee has suggested that post of chief financial officer was not required and asked that director admin who is presently looking after the work of accounts should continue, besides the post of chief scientist was not required and should be abolished, CEO or VP will work as chief scientist, he remarked.

The PCCC, he said was also asked for focusing on making cotton crop more profitable and competitive by exploring the possibility of wheat sowing in cotton by introducing agriculture economic and large scale planting techniques preferably mechanization. Meanwhile, Cotton Research Institute Multan was directed to prepare a concept note for popularization the wheat sowing along with cotton crop with in 15 days with consultation of other stakeholders.—APP