Exports of Egypt’s prized cotton will hit 38,000 tonnes in the 2016-17 season ending this month, up 19 percent on last year’s total, the head of a cotton exporting council told Reuters, as Egypt looks to win back market share lost after a 2011 uprising.
Production of Egyptian long-staple cotton, famously used for luxury linens, has fallen sharply since political upheaval six years ago led to less enforcement of regulations, degrading the crop’s quality.
Last year Egypt banned all but the highest quality cotton seed in order to save its historic crop, dramatically reducing the area under cultivation to about 130,000 acres, a more than 100-year low.
Egypt is now looking to scale that cultivation back up. The area planted rose to about 220,000 acres this year and is expected to hit up to 500,000 acres in the next two to three years, according to cotton traders.