‘Cotton: Review of the World Situation’ Addresses Gender Equity, China’s Vision, and Garment Weight


 For Immediate Release 


Date Posted: 21 June, 2019


Executive Summary

Highlights from the June 2019 ‘Review’ include:

  • The need for gender-specific perspectives at the earliest stages of agricultural policy-making to empower women (especially in less-developed countries).
  • The powerful impact that the decrease in average garment weight over the last 20 years and the effect it has had on cotton demand.
  • How China’s massive Belt & Road Initiative could remake the global economy and the specific changes it could bring to the international cotton and textile industries.
  • A cotton market overview that points out how trade tensions and rising global stocks are adding uncertainty to the marketplace.


‘Cotton: Review of the World Situation’ Addresses Gender Equity, China’s Vision, and Garment Weight


The June 2019 ‘Cotton: Review of the World Situation’ contains four articles that address a wide array of topics, including:

Gender Equality: Authored by Dr. Amal Saber Owis, former Director of Egypt’s Cotton Research Institute, this article makes the case that women’s economic empowerment is a prerequisite for sustainable development and poverty alleviation, and that gender-specific perspectives must be integrated at the design stage of agricultural policy and programming.


Changes in Garment Weight: Cotton Incorporated’s Senior Economist Jon Devine presents a wealth of data showing that one of the lesser-understood shocks the cotton industry has faced in recent years is the decrease in average garment weight. It has been a challenge for consumption growth in the past, although recent market stabilisation and gentle increases in average weight may be positive signs for cotton demand in the future.

China’s Belt & Road Initiative: ICAC Director of Trade Analysis Andrei Guitchounts provides an overview of China’s 2013 economic program, the Belt & Road Initiative (BRI). The ambitious plan would have a major impact on trade flows and could go a long way toward improving infrastructure and logistics in the countries where it is implemented.


Trade Tensions and Rising Stocks: The cotton market faces continued uncertainty due to the escalating US-China trade war, with prices under additional pressure due to a projected increase in global stocks. Prices have suffered from the escalating tariffs, dropping to a season-low of 76 cents per pound on May 14th.


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About the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC)

Formed in 1939, the ICAC is an association of cotton producing, consuming and trading countries. It acts as a catalyst for change by helping member countries maintain a healthy world cotton economy; provides transparency to the world cotton market by serving as a clearinghouse for technical information on cotton production; and serves as a forum for discussing cotton issues of international significance. The ICAC does not have a role in setting market prices or in intervening in market mechanisms. For more information, please visit www.icac.org.