About ICAC

Id Who we are Mission Strategic Plan Action
1

The ICAC is an association of members of cotton producing, consuming and trading countries. The Committee was formed in 1939, and the Secretariat was established in 1946. The annual budget is US$1.8 million, of which about 85% comes from members assessments and 15% from the sale of subscriptions and participant fees at meetings and seminars. There are nine members of the Secretariat originating from eight countries; all work from one office in Washington, DC. Documents are published in English, French and Spanish, monthly summaries are available in Russian, and annual summaries are available in both Arabic and Russian.

To assist members in fostering a healthy word cotton economy. The role of the ICAC is to raise awareness, to provide information, and to serve as a catalyst for cooperative action on issues of International significance. 

The cotton industry is witnessing strong demand growth, advances in technology and substantial progress towards liberalised trade in cotton textiles and apparel. By many measures, the health of the cotton industry is good. Nevertheless, many challenges continue, including the need to encourage universal implementation of sustainable production systems; competition with polyester and the need to boost demand; distortions to production and trade caused by government measures in cotton; and continuing difficulties with contract defaults. In addition, the ICAC faces institutional challenges in boosting membership; a shift in attitudes towards public-sector involvement in commodity matters; privatisation of national cotton industry organisations; and pressures on government budgets. Cotton is grown in more than 100 countries on about 2.8% of the world's arable land, making it one of the most significant crops in terms of land use after food grains and soybeans. Cotton is also a heavily traded agricultural commodity, with more than 150 countries involved in exports or imports of cotton. More than 100 million family units are engaged directly in cotton production. When family labour, hired-on farm labour, and workers in ancillary services such as transportation, ginning, baling and storage are considered, total involvement in the cotton sector reaches an estimated 350 million people. It also provides employment to additional millions in allied industries such as agricultural inputs, machinery and equipment, cottonseed crushing, and textile manufacturing. Cotton cultivation contributes to food security and improved life expectancy in rural areas of developing countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Cotton played an important role in industrial development starting in the 17th century and continues to play an important role today as a major source of revenue in the developing world. The value of world cotton production is estimated at approximately $40 billion in 2007/08. The economic importance of cotton justifies the involvement of governments in an international cotton organisation dedicated to improving the health of the industry.