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India eyes seven billion dollar leather export

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Nov 22 (UNI) The Government today said it is targeting an export of leather products worth seven billion dollars in the next five years.

The present export stands at 2.7 billion dollars. The new target is to be achieved before 2011, Council for Leather Exports Executive Director K Elangovan told UNI, in an interview.

As a first step, the Chennai-based Council, under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, yesterday launched a three-day "India Leather Summit-2006" here to evolve an action plan to almost triple its leather exports.

The summit, being attended by international experts in the field, leather industrialists and other stakeholders, would identify constraints in the way of achieving the goal and work out a strategy to overcome them, Council Chairman M Rafeeque Ahmed said. The speakers were unanimous that appropriate measures should be taken to increase the capacity for manufacturing leather products as there was no shortage of raw material, tanning capacity and human resource.

This, according to them, could be realised by inviting more investment in leather manufacturing sector, including Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

There is no shortage of hide of buffalo and cow and skin of sheep and goats. India accounts for 21 per cent of cattle population in the world. At the same time, India's exports of finished leather products accounts for only 10 per cent of the total global production.

"This gap has to be filled to achieve the target of seven billion dollars worth foreign exchange earnings from leather product export.

The only way out is to increase the production capacity which is possible only through huge investment," Dr Elangovan said.

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