Less than 13 months after cotton notched an all-time high price, president Zhang Hongxia with Weiqiao in Hong Kong said China this season will import 18.5 million bales. That would mark the largest import in six years and an increase of 54 percent more than last year.
"Things are looking to pick up in the industry at the beginning of this year, as far as we can see we are running at full capacity in the first two months and our end-product cotton yarn inventory has been reduced by 12 percent during the period," Zhang said. "Cotton demand is set to rise this year and the price gap between foreign and local cotton will narrow steadily."
At 12:22 p.m. on Thursday, cotton futures fell 0.8 percent, a 0.75 cent slip to 93.28 cents per pound.
The record price for cotton futures is $2.197 per pound as established on March 7 of last year.
Reuters reports a survey indicated cotton plantings in the U.S. decreased 13 percent as compared to last year's figures.