Leather Industry occupies a prominent place in the industrial map of the country. India is the second largest producer of footwear, 2nd largest exporter of Leather Garments, 5th largest exporter of Leather Goods and 3rd Largest Exporter of Saddlery and Harness items. Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra are major production and export centers of leather, leather products and footwear. According to membership records of Council for Leather Exports (CLE), Uttar Pradesh contributed a share of 31.35% in total exports of leather, leather products and footwear from the country while Maharashtra contributed 2.28% during 2016-17.
MoS of Commerce and Industry C. R. Chaudhary said in the Lok Sabha that as per information received from Council for Leather Exports (CLE), the manufacturing based export of leather, leather products and footwear from India increased from USD 5.65 billion in 2016-17 to USD 5.74 billion in 2017-18, growing by 1.65%. The exports showed decline of 9.84% and 3.56% in Dollar Terms during 2015-16 and 2016-17 respectively. However, during the current year, exports showed increase of 5.25% in rupee terms as compared to the same period last year are:
The major reasons for the decline in exports are due to external factors namely recession in the major market of European Union (to which about 55% of exports are directed), instability in middle-east, stiff competition from Polyurethane Garments to the Leather Garments segment, decrease in demand of non-leather footwear in African countries due to emergence of production centres in those countries and competition from China and decrease in global imports of finished leather.