Pakistan’s cotton fabric exports surged in value and volume terms since the beginning of the year as a result of larger US demand and increased quotas on the EU market.
Pakistan’s exports of cotton fabrics still rose 70.43% in July in volume terms, compared with the same month last year. More important, Pakistani exporters were able maintaining their prices or shifting to added value products as average unit value was only down 0.16% in July.
Unit values did not decline although cotton prices were much lower than in July last year.
As a result, cotton fabric exports were up 70% in value terms at $107 million. By comparison, cotton yarn exports only rose 1.23% in volume terms at the same time.
Sharp increase in US orders
The surge in shipments is mainly due to a sharp increase in US orders since the beginning of the year.
After US groups dramatically reduced their capacities in 2001, US fabric imports substantially rose this year to the benefit of Asian suppliers.
In July, total US fabric imports were up 42% in volume terms and shipments from Pakistan even rose 64%. In the January-July period, US fabric imports from Pakistan increased by 62% in volume terms. The decline in Pakistani unit values was limited to 7.55% compared with an overall 17% fall in unit prices.
Pakistani prices were dramatically reduced for certain US categories, however, such as blue denim fabrics (- 24%) or Cheesecloth imports (- 59%).
Pakistani shipments of sateen and twill fabrics (US categories 326 and 317) nearly doubled in volume terms as a result of lower prices.
Pakistani exporters are even reaching the US limit for category 315 (printcloth fabrics) with 93% of total available quantities already licensed on 15 October. Pakistani exports to the US of printcloth fabrics were up 58% in value terms since the beginning of the year with a 18% decline in average unit value.
Shifting to value added products on EU market
On the EU market, Pakistani exporters benefited from a 4.6% incr