Stakeholders in the cotton industry have welcomed the new cotton producer pricing regime that has seen a price increase of over 200%, saying the development is likely to boost the industry.
The new cotton pricing system that will see a kilogramme of cotton fetching an average of US$1 on the local market up from an average of US30 cents that prevailed last season, has been praised by farmers as a positive step that will help resuscitate the cotton industry.
The new cotton producer prices are higher compared to regional prices averaging US80 cents per kilogramme in Malawi and South Africa.
â€œApart from boosting confidence to farmers, contractors and input producing firms, the new prices will help turn around the fortunes of the cotton industry,â€ said one farmer.
Over the past years, traditional western markets for cotton have been shunning local agricultural products such as cotton in direct response to sanctions.
However, the governmentâ€™s Look East Policy is expected to assist in the marketing of the cotton crop as the worldâ€™s fastest growing economy, China is expected to lead the pack of buyers.