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Tofail: Leather sector crisis to end soon

  • Published at 06:48 pm August 26th, 2018
The leather industry has been suffering from a funding crisis for a while
The leather industry has been suffering from a funding crisis for a while Rajib Dhar

Tofail on Sunday said despite the cut in prices of rawhides, they were not being sold

Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed has said the decision of lowering prices of rawhide was right, amid criticism over low prices, at his secretariat office on the first working day after Eid in the capital.

Tofail on Sunday said despite the cut in prices of rawhides, they were not being sold. 

There was a wide range of criticism in social media and reports in media about the low prices of rawhides of sacrificial animals, which is the lowest, comparing to last couple of years’.

 “I have read the news that there is a crisis in the leather sector concerning the price. This is because of a fund shortage as tanners did not get funds from banks in due time,”Tofail said.

“There is another crisis at the Savar Leather Industrial Estate, as the Central Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) is not fully operational. This happened as the expected number of tanneries could not start production there,’’ he added.

After visiting several areas of Dhaka, it was found the prices of hides had drastically fallen compared to last year. Cow hide of a standard size was sold for Tk500-800, whereas, the same size was sold for Tk1,000-1,900 in 2017.

However, the minister expressed his hope that the crisis would be soon be over. “I have talked to the Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu about the land registration and completion of the establishment of the CETP so the crisis can resolved soon,” Tofail said, adding that, “after Independence, we had three export items – Finished leather, tea and jute. Last year, we declared finished leather as product of the year. The leather industry has been included in the list of thriving sector as well.”

Tofail also claimed the Bangladesh Tanners Association (BTA) has assured to buy rawhides at the government set prices and they will start purchasing soon. He also rejected any possibility of export of rawhides.  

This year, the government set prices of salted cow rawhides at Tk45-50 per sq ft for Dhaka and Tk35-40 for other parts of the country, which was set at Tk50-55 for the Dhaka region and Tk40-45 for outside Dhaka, last year.

The price of salted rawhides of goats was set at Tk18-20 per sq ft which was Tk20-22 last year.

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