HONG KONG--Chinese authorities have warned cotton buyers they will be severely punished if they violate government price ceilings for cotton, according to the official China Business Times.
The paper said two cotton mills in eastern Shandong province had paid cotton growers higher prices without approval and, as a result, disrupted the purchase of the crop in neighboring areas.
One mill in Ling county offered growers about 72 cents a kilo of unprocessed cotton; the government has set a price of 66 cents a kilo.
Beijing has ordered local agencies to insure that state-run textile mills have sufficient supplies of inexpensive cotton.
Western apparel traders report manufacturers are not able to get enough cotton for export orders. There have also been complaints about price hikes for cotton goods.

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