Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Wednesday, Jun 16, 2004
Industry & Economy
CLE plans road shows in 3 European countries to promote leather exports
Kolkata , June 15
THE Council for Leather Exports (CLE) is planning to hold road shows in three European countries in a bid to forge joint ventures, technical collaborations, marketing tie-ups and to attract foreign direct investment in the leather sector.
According to CLE sources, these shows are proposed to be held during the visit of Indian trade delegations to Spain, Italy and Portugal in the current year.
"These shows are planned to be held in consultation with the Indian Mission in these countries. They would be held in major production clusters of footwear and footwear components as well as tanning."
The first of such expositions would be held in Spain later this month. Presentation meetings with Spanish Trade Associations have already been lined up at important clusters in Madrid, Alicante and Palma de Mallorca, which will be followed by individual business meetings between the members of the Indian delegation and Spanish companies. Similar such road shows will be organised by Tuscany and Marche regions in Italy in November.
The visits are part of the CLE's market development and export promotion programmes chalked out for the current year, the sources said adding that a nine per cent growth rate is being targeted for 2004-05, when exports are projected at $2.2 billion.
Available statistics showed that the European Union remained a major market for Indian leather and leather products accounting for 62 per cent of the country's exports. Among these countries, Germany is the biggest importer followed by Italy which has a 22 per cent share and Spain which has a 9 per cent share. However, in 2002-03, India's share to EU was little more than four per cent.
Referring to the first of the destinations Spain the sources said that a seven-member footwear component manufacturers' delegation from Spain has already visited Agra. The delegates were interested in seeing the footwear manufacturing facilities there and were interested in marketing their components and appointing distributors.
According to DGCIS (Director-General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics), between April and December 2003, the three targeted countries imported goods worth $311.63-million from India with Italy being the largest importer among these three countries, although it was Spain which registered a double-digit growth rate in this period.
The footwear sector, which was the main engine for India's leather export growth in 2003-04, witnessed impressive gains in the three European markets with a growth rate of 134.55 per cent in Italy, 125.22 per cent in Spain and 73.84 per cent in Portugal. These three countries accounted for only 13 per cent share in India's total footwear exports in 2003-04, but CLE felt that they held good potential, for forging tie-ups between Indian and overseas entrepreneurs.
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