Low cost, high quality push up country’s footwear export

http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/more.php?news_id=133153&date=2011-04-21

Low cost, high quality push up country’s footwear export
Arafat Ara

Country’s footwear export grew by around 50 per cent during the first nine months of the current fiscal year due to the rising demand of the products in the USA and EU (European Union) countries.

The industry insiders said the demand for Bangladeshi footwear items has been increasing gradually in overseas competitive markets due to low production costs.

The quality of the products is also higher than that of other exporting countries and this matter plays a key role in the growth of export, they said.

Earning from footwear export stood at $221.87million during July-March period this fiscal, up by $ 74.12 million from $147.75 million fetched during the corresponding period last fiscal, according to the latest data of Export Promotion Bureau (EPB).

The income was 30.63 per cent higher than the export target fixed by the government for the July-March period.

The industry insiders expressed the hope that the trend of the export would continue in the next three months as well.

Leather Goods and Footwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association of Bangladesh president Saiful Islam said the largest footwear exporting country China is losing its competitiveness in the global market due to her failure to produce high-quality shoes at competitive prices.

“For this, the importers from the USA, Germany, Italy, France, Japan and Canada are shifting to Bangladesh,” he said

Mr Saiful Islam also said despite having many opportunities they cannot properly utilise the potentiality of the sector due to lack of skilled manpower, electricity shortage and transportation problem.

He said the current power outage and poor transportation facility cost them high as this often sends negative signal to top global importers like Macy’s, Sears, JC Penney-USA, Deichmann-Germany, Bata-Italy, Bata-Czechoslovakia, Aldo-Canada and ABC Mart-Japan because of delayed shipments.

“The export growth may increase more than double if we can successfully overcome the obstacles that affect the growing industry,” he said adding that the authority should take immediate measures to ensure uninterrupted power supply considering the outstanding performance of the footwear industry.

The market size of local leather footwear industry stands at around Tk 18 billion (Tk 1,800 crore), of which nearly 45 per cent is exported-oriented. The country exports around six million pairs of leather footwear a year.

Bangladesh exports leather footwear products to various destinations, including the USA, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, Sweden, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

Apex Adelchi Footwear Ltd, Jennys Footwear, Bangladesh Exp, HN Shoes, Bay Footwear, Youngone etc are the leading local companies that export footwear.

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