CHICAGO (B)--New information about the historical percentage share of cotton in China's yarn production led to the revision of a decade's worth of Chinese cotton supply-demand balance sheets, United States Department of Agriculture said in the monthly cotton world markets and trade report. The changes, which pushed up Chinese and world cotton ending stocks, roiled the U.S. cotton market April 11.

In that report, projected Chinese cotton ending stocks for 1999-2000 were raised to 16.183 million (480-lb) bales from 13.483 million. World carryout for 1999-2000 was raised to 42.641 million bales from 39.941 million.

April 11 report was the tip of the iceberg, since USDA has now published its revised Chinese and world cotton balance sheets for the past 10 years.

USDA's consumption estimates for China account for both mill and non-mill use of cotton. The mill use category estimates are derived from monthly and annual yarn production data as reported by the National Statistics Bureau (NSB, formerly SSB).

The non-mill use category includes wadding, military, medical and on-farm use of cotton,

plus an allowance for processing waste.

From 1985-1991, USDA relied on data published in China's Textile Industry Yearbook to determine cotton's share of yarn production. Beginning in 1992, this share data series was discontinued, and USDA analysts estimated the share, assuming a downward trend.

Recent evidence indicates that further reductions are needed in the cotton share series beginning in 1992-93, USDA said in a report authored by James Johnson and Carol Skelly.

This evidence included fiber share statistics presented at the September 1999 China International Cotton Conference in Xi'an, China, by an official of the China Textile Industry Bureau.

The Textile Bureau's data have since been corroborated by information received from other sources in China, some of which was included in a presentation at USDA's 2000 Agriculture Outlook Forum in February.

The non-mill use estimate has been raised to 600,000 tonnes for the years 1992-93 through 1999-2000, partially offsetting the reductions to the mill use category. USDA had assumed a fixed estimate of 450,000 tonnes since 1993-94, but reports from China indicate a range of 500,000 to more than 800,000 tonnes, and the revised estimates incorporate this information.

The cumulative effect of these changes was to raise 1999-2000 beginning stocks by 3.7 million bales to 21.1 million. The revision in stocks was supported by recent information from Chinese government officials, Johnson and Skelly said.

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