Cotton has not proved itself as a strategic product!


Maintaining the rate of manat costs 20 times more than cotton.

According to the monthly report of the State Customs Committee, compared with the first half of 2020, the export of cotton fiber increased 2.1 times in value and 1.8 times in quantity. During the same period last year, 44,033 tons of cotton fiber worth $ 59,443 were exported from Azerbaijan. Also, in January-June 2021, Azerbaijan exported 8,417 tons of cotton yarn worth $ 23.62 million. While it is a positive thing for our country to receive currency from cotton, cotton-growing countries around the world earn more by developing the local knitwear industry. Suffice it to cite the example of neighboring Turkey.

Today, the Azerbaijani market is overflowing with cotton products imported from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. So why does Azerbaijan sell a number of non-oil products as raw materials, including cotton fiber, and does not prefer to produce from it? While this is a realistic approach, it is a mechanical point of view. In fact, Azerbaijani cotton is the lowest quality product in the world. Therefore, for Azerbaijan, where the knitwear industry is underdeveloped, local cotton cannot play the role of an effective raw material. Cotton grown in Azerbaijan only in Barda is close to world standards. Or rather, cotton varieties that produce high quality fiber cannot adapt to our climate. Therefore, we cannot grow high-quality cotton by world standards. For example, the fiber from one ton of our cotton is obtained from 250 kilograms of Egyptian cotton, 300 kilograms of Mexican cotton and 350 kilograms of Uzbek and Turkmen cotton. For this reason, Azerbaijani cotton is cheap on the world market (due to its poor quality). Our cotton is bought only in countries with a high level of knitwear industry. With the help of certain technologies, they can get a profitable product. Back in Soviet times, experts knew about the low quality of Azerbaijani cotton. The "mountains" created by Azerbaijani cotton in the city of Fergana are probably still smoggy. The Soviet government stimulated cotton production with data to keep employment from falling, as it was getting a lot of revenue from Azeri oil. For this reason, the "cotton postscript" later became popular in Azerbaijan. Factories say that instead of cotton they bring in money, that is, they increase the value of the product ...

How do we grow cotton now? There are high-ranking Chinese officials in Azerbaijan who are members of the international cotton mafia. The export of Uzbek cotton to Europe and the use of child labor in cotton production have been banned since the time of Islam Karimov. Since then, Uzbek cotton has been smuggled to other CIS countries, from where it is exported to Europe as a product of that country. Azerbaijan is also among such unofficial transit countries. To avoid the question of “where is so much cotton in Azerbaijan from” among European importers, officials who are members of the cotton mafia convinced the government that cotton should be a strategic product - it will bring currency to the country. However, the bandits are planting cotton to persuade their European partners. It should also be noted that European countries importing such sensitive products are watching via satellite to see if cotton is actually grown in Azerbaijan and how much is grown? In other words, the cotton bandit officials deceived the state and sacrificed their businesses in favor of agriculture. Finally, as mentioned above, up to $ 24 million in foreign currency came into the country from the sale of cotton in the first half of the year, so let's assume that the same amount arrives in the next six months, bringing in only $ 50 million. But the Azerbaijani government spends at best $ 1 billion a year just to maintain the manat, which is 20 times more than the currency brought by cotton. This means that cotton, which the government declared a strategic product, did not justify itself and could not justify itself.

Akif Nasirli