Leather and leather products exports growth may slow down in 2012-13 on account of a slide in demand from the European markets.

The growth next fiscal might be around 10 per cent, lower than the 18 per cent growth that the industry is likely to clock in 2011-12, said Mr Neeraj Kumar Gupta, Executive Director, India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO).

Growth target

“The exports will grow to $4.5 billion this fiscal, as against $3.8 billion in 2010-11. However, the growth is lower than the estimated target of $4.7 billion for this year,” Mr Gupta said at a press meet to announce the 17{+t}{+h} International Leather Goods Fair here on Wednesday. The industry is exploring other potential markets including South-East Asia, Japan, Korea, Africa and Latin America.

According to Mr Paresh Rajda, Regional Chairman, Council for Leather Exports, the West Asian markets are currently dominated by Chinese leather goods and products, which are basically machine made.

“Until recently, Europe was the single biggest market for leather exports from India. But now markets like US and Latin America is also picking up. We are also trying to make inroads into the South-East Asian markets – which is currently dominated by Chinese products,” Mr Rajda said.

The total leather market in India is pegged at about $8 billion, of which exports account for almost $4.5 billion. Leather shoes and footwear account for almost 47 per cent of the total exports while leather goods account for about 28 per cent, Mr Gupta said.

3-day fair

The three-day International Leather Goods Fair (ILGF) – to be inaugurated on February 18 - is organised by ITPO in collaboration with Council for Leather Exports and Indian Leather Products Association.

Close to 46 companies are likely to participate in the present edition of ILGF. The fair will also witness participation of 19 buyers from countries such as Canada, Cyprus, Dubai, Germany, Mauritius and Malaysia among others.

shobha@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on February 15, 2012)
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