The Footwear and Leather Fair 2009 will be held on November 6 – 8, at the BMICH, to showcase Sri Lanka’s leather and footwear sectors to local and international buyers.
The exhibition is organised by the Sri Lanka Export Development Board in collaboration with the Ministry of Industrial Development, the Industrial Development Board, the Sri Lanka Footwear Association and the Lanka Small and Medium Footwear and Leather Goods Manufacturers Association.
The EDB said the main purpose of the exhibition is to expose Sri Lanka’s capabilities in the sector, to international buyers. The exhibition is hoping to attract many foreign visitors and is offering attractive room rates from Sri Lankan hotels.
Currently Sri Lanka’s main exports markets of the leather products sector are the EU and the US. Exports of leather products brought US$ 17.68 million this year from January to July, while rubber and leather footwear brought in US$ 9.8 million.
The sector is one of the ‘thrust industries’ identified for development by the government on the basis of its ability to create large scale rural employment and the potential to eventually generate US$ 1 billion in export earnings. Therefore, the sector has been earmarked for government facilitations including training, import duty concessions for raw materials and protection from cheap imports.
Manufacturers said that the government incentives and the GSP+ facility has helped grow the industry over the last four years.