Govt eyes $5b leather exports by 2021

Staff Correspondent

2nd December, 2019 07:50:36 printer

Govt eyes $5b leather exports by 2021

The government is trying to raise export income from leather and leather goods to $5 billion by 2021 with providing necessary policy support, Industries Minister Nurul Majid Mahmud Humayun said on Monday.

“The global market of leather and leather goods in worth $220 billion where Bangladesh’s share is only $1.2 per cent. The government is working to reach $5 billion export target from the sector by 2021,” he said. 

In achieving the target, the government is not accepting any irregularities or deviations in the leather industry for attaining the certification of Leather Working Group (LWG) aimed at increasing export of leather and leather goods, he pointed out.

The minister said this while speaking as the chief guest at the inaugural session of a workshop on ‘Leather and Leather Products Development Policy 2019′ at the Economic Reporters’ Forum (ERF) auditorium in the city.

“Our leather and leather goods export has not risen at an expected level as there is no LWG certification in favour of domestic leather products. Considering this fact and being directed by the Prime Minister, the Industries Ministry has already shifted all tannery factories from Hazaribagh to environmentally friendly Savar Tannery Industrial Estate,” he said.

Since the receipt of LWG certification is one of the prerequisites for increasing exports of leather and leather goods, so our government will not tolerate any irregularities or deviations in the leather industry, the minister warned.

The minister informed that the Dhaka Tannery Industrial Estate Management Company Ltd has already been formed to facilitate the smooth management of the leather industry in Savar.

He said the government is working to build a sustainable, environment-friendly and complaint leather industrial sector and so the government is providing all sorts of policy supports to the concerned entrepreneurs.

Towards that end, the government has formulated ‘Leather and Leather Products Development Policy 2019’ to tap huge potentials in the leather sector, he also said.

State Minister for Industries Kamal Ahmed Mojumder and ERF President Saiful Islam Dilal attended the workshop as special guests while Industries Secretary Md Abdul Halim was in the chair.

Kamal Mojumder said under the directive of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the government is working to take forward the country’s leather industry.

“We are working to produce leather and leather goods by maintaining the international standard. The leather industry will play a vital role to achieve the Vision-2021,” he added.

Abdul Halim urged all stakeholders of the leather sector to work together for developing the country’s tannery industry and attaining the target of $5 billion export.

Additional Secretary of the Industries Ministry Begum Parag delivered the welcome speech while ERF General Secretary SM Rashidul Islam delivered the vote of thanks.

At the panel discussion, Industries Secretary Md Abdul Halim presented a paper on ‘Challenges of Bangladesh’s Leather and Leather Goods Industry and Overcoming strategy of the Government while Managing Director of the Austan Limited Ibnul Yousuf and Dhaka University Professor Dr Md Abu Eusuf presented another two papers.