ISLAMABAD - Central Cotton Research Institute (CCRI) has established a state-of-the-art modern laboratory to eradicate the attacks of white flies and pink ball worms on cotton crops which were causing damages to the crop worth billions of rupees annually across the cotton growing areas of the country. Besides, the institute had also started its research on other insects to prevent the crop from their attacks and a mechanism was also evolved to disseminate the research finding to the door steps of the farmers, particularly small scale growers, Cotton Commissioner in the Ministry of National Food Security and Research Dr Khalid Abdullah Wedensday said. He said the decision for the establishment of the laboratory was taken to enhance the agriculture productivity for the prosperity of farming community and economic development of the country as according the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The other objective of the establishment of the laboratory was to put the local agriculture sector on modern lines by introducing the innovative cultivation techniques, making it climate resilient, resource efficient, profit oriented and competitive in international markets, he added.

Dr Abdullah said research scientists were also engaged in developing the new cotton seed verities which would be less water consuming, heat tolerant and resist against pest attacks, adding that soon these verities would be commercially available for cultivation.

Meanwhile, he said cotton arrival in the markets had witnessed about 5.26 percent decrease during first week of current month as compared the corresponding period of last year.

According to data of Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association, about 7.706 million cotton bales arrived in the local markets during the first week of November, 2018 as compared the arrival of 8.134 million bales of the corresponding month of last year.

By the first week of current month, cotton arrival from the Sindh province had witnessed negative growth of 1.19 percent, whereas from Punjab it was reduced by 8.30 percent respectively, it added.

The commodity arrival from the Punjab province during the period under review was recorded at 4.271 million bales which, stood at 4.658 million bales in the same period of last year.

Meanwhile, the crop arrival from the different districts of Sindh was recorded at 3.434 million bales as compared to arrival of 3.476 million bales of the corresponding period of last year.

Out of the total arrived cotton in the domestic markets, about 5,804,114 bales were sold, whereas 793,598 bales remained unsold.

Meanwhile, 6,597,712 bales were pressed and 83,958 bales exported. During the period under review, 1,108,619 cotton bales also remained unginned as compared to 1,390,522 bales of same period of last year.