Currency fluctuations worry leather exporters

Chennai, July 21 (IANS) Indian leather exporters are keeping their fingers crossed about the second half of the current year despite an expected 25 percent growth across segments during the first half because of the fluctuations in euro and pound sterling.

‘As nearly 75 percent of the Indian exports are to Europe the currency fluctuations is a worrisome factor for the industry,’ Chairman of Council for Leather Exports (CLE) Habib Hussain told reporters here Wednesday.

‘No industry can absorb 10-15 percent currency fluctuation,’ he added.

According to him, the Indian exporters are focussed on mid and upper segments of the European market and not at the mass segments in other world markets.

He was briefing the media about the fifth edition of the footwear components, accessories and finished leather exhibition- Ambur Open- at Ambur, around 190 km from here.

The two day exhibition-cum-seminar will kick start July 24. He said the Ambur-Vanniambadi-Ranipet belt is the heartland of leather processing activity and it is ideal to have the exhibition there.

‘Like the hoisery town Tirupur we thought Ambur has a similar opportunity to develop. The centre gave us Rs.42 crore grant for setting up common effluent treatment plant (CETP) and Rs.6 crore for the construction of the trade centre,’ said M. Rafeeque Ahmed, chairman of Farida Group.

He said the leather units mainly involved in footwear making in the Ambur belt export around Rs.3,500 crore worth of goods.

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