Leather and footwear exports in Sri Lanka have doubled in just the period of just a year, according to minister of commerce for Sri Lanka Rishad Bathiudeen. The minister added that so far, the exports also posted the highest revenues in recent times.
Commerce minister Rishad Bathiudeen said at a promotional event held last week that in the year 2013, the revenue earned from exports by the leather and footwear sector was worth $51 million. This has, he said, more than doubled to reach $110 million in 2014. This only goes to show the strong revenue potential of this sector. The performance of the footwear and leather industry supports the efforts to promote exports as part of a 100 day program which has been taken up by the recent government.
Rishad Bathiudeen was addressing a gathering at the 7th edition of the Annual Footwear and Leather Fair. The event was organized by Exports Development Board (EDB), Sri Lanka and was held at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) in Colombo. After successfully conducting and completing six previous editions of the Annual Footwear and Leather Fair, the latest event by the Exports Development Board was organized last week, with Sunday being the closing day of the event.
The event was supported by numerous stakeholders of the leather and footwear industry such as the Sri Lanka Footwear and Leather Products Manufacturers' Association (SLFLPM) and the Industrial Development Board (IDB), among others. There were many government officials as well as members from the diplomatic community who attended the opening session of the Annual Footwear and Leather Fair.
The leather and footwear industry has witnessed a strong growth over the years when it comes to export revenues. In 2010, the gross exports of the leather and footwear industry was $35.64 million, which eventually tripled to reach a value of $110 million in the year 2014. This has resulted in a year on year growth of an impressive 215% over values in 2013.