Despite huge potential, FG neglects leather value chains

  • Even as exports are estimated at N419 billion by 2025

Leather and products in the leather value chain are among the most traded livestock products in the agricultural sector worldwide.

The sector has the longest value chain – shoes, bags, seats, handicrafts, car seats, etc. – and is fully integrated into millions of African households, according to Hidenet International Market Report.

The value of imports and exports of hides and skins, hides and leather products from Africa in 2018 was $2.55 billion, while the estimated potential of the sector stands at $40 billion.

According to the report “A Blueprint for the African Leather Industry” commissioned by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and prepared jointly by ITC, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the Common Fund for basic products, it is estimated that African countries have 20% of the world’s livestock. , sheep and goats, but produce only 14.9% of world production of hides and skins.

They own 10% of the world’s livestock but produce only 4.5% of cattle hides. Their exports of hides and skins have fallen in recent years from 4% to 2% and their tanning capacity from 9.2 to 6.8%.

The report identifies Africa’s potential and makes recommendations for supply chain actors – governments, private sector and international organisations.

The global leather goods market reached a value of $350.7 billion in 2020. Going forward, the market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.5% between 2021 and 2026 to reach $450 billion, said Research and Markets, the world’s largest market research store.

Last year, the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) estimated that Nigeria’s leather industry could generate more than 419 billion naira (about $1 billion) in export revenue by 2025.

At the last livestock conference, experts again accused the federal government of neglecting the leather value chain in Nigeria despite the country’s relative advantage in livestock farming.

“The potential of the leather industry has not been fully realized despite its enormous potential as a source of foreign currency and a contributor to national jobs and wealth,” a task force noted at the conference.

Despite the launch of the leather and leather products policy implementation plan by the vice-president, Professor Yemi Osibanjo, in 2021 and the inauguration of the inter-ministerial steering committee on the implementation plan of the national policy of leather and leather products, the policy has not come to fruition. significant progress.

Experts want the federal government to support the development of the Nigerian brand of FLG and the creation of shoe manufacturing clusters in the states of Aba, Kano, Kaduna, Abuja, Lagos and Nasarawa, and rehabilitate and bring to life the plants and tanneries of dying hides and skins.

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