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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:African cotton: how to protect its market position
Author:Estur, Gérald
Geographic term:Africa
cotton industry
Abstract:The development of the cotton sector is a strategic economic issue for several countries in Africa. The slide in world raw cotton fibre prices, evident since the end of 1991, is intensifying pressure on all cotton fibre producing countries. The pattern of international trade is also changing. One repercussion is the greater demand for quality fibre by yarn-manufacturers who pass on the constraints they have in moving their products to their suppliers of raw cotton. For a long time, African cotton had a very positive image. This was a significant factor in its ability to capture a share in the growth markets of the Far Eastern yarn industry. However, the output growth in African cotton and its productivity gains have brought in their wake some falling off in quality. And this just at a time when higher quality is particularly prized by the yarn industry and when competition from other sources is growing. Hope lies in a radical reorientation: what is needed is no longer producing more for less, since the export market for such output is drying up anyway, but producing higher quality cotton (even though this might mean producing less) and better marketing. Text also in French.