V.M. Khaleelur Rahman
There is good demand for all items of hides and skins in Chennai leather market as in all other centres in the country and even abroad. Exporters of leather and leather products such as leather shoes, garments and goods are concentrating very much in procuring raw hides and skins as their availability both at home and abroad are limited. Almost all tanneries and shoe factories in Tamil Nadu particularly in places like Chennai, Ambur, Vaniyambadi, Ranipet and Mel Visharam are functioning well as they are able to get orders from different importing countries like Italy, U.K., Germany, U.S.A. etc. But the fact remains that most of them are not getting the workable prices at the present time when prices of not only raw hides and skins but also chemicals and other items have gone up considerably and even labour charges are on the increase. Many exporters have no option except to have regular business with their customers even at unworkable levels due to the pressure of their banks for regular export documents for negotiation.
It is learnt that some exporters have sold their S/C and F/C 3/5 and 4/6 sq. ft. goat upper and lining leathers at around US $2.00 and 1.50 per sq. ft. C&F. Hong Kong and Singapore customers mostly show interest for these leathers and regular business is taking place. However there is no report of any big business. The shortage of raw hides and skins is the main cause for this. Even big exporters are not interested in selling bulk quantities as they do not know what is in store for them as far as supplies of raw hides and skins are concerned. Many small tanners and exporters have either stopped or curtailed their production due to the present difficult situation.
The offers made by some tanners recently in higher grades of upper leathers were at around US$2.50 per sq. ft. C&F. Some overseas customers buy this item regularly from some top class tanners and exporters. It is also learnt that some shoe factories offered a particular type of their shoes at around Euro 18 to 20.
Recent offers of exporters have been at around the following prices:
Material Size/sq.ft. Substance Selection Price US$ per sq. ft. C&F
Goat upper leather 3/5 0.6/0.8 mm ABC 2.50
Goat suede leather 3/5 and 4/7 0.6/0.8 mm ABC/D/E 2.10/1.80/1.60
Goat lining leather 4/7 0.5/0.7 mm TR-1/2/3 1.60/1.50/1.40
Material Size/sq.ft. Substance Selection Price US$ per sq.ft. C&F
Sheep suede/cabretta leather 4/7 0.6/0.8 mm ABC/D/E 2.50/2.00/1.50
Sheep Suede/cabretta leather 6/9 0.8/1.00 mm ABC/D/E 2.75/2.25/1.75
Sheep lining leather 3/5 and 4/7 0.5/0.7 mm TR-1/2/3 combined 1.60
In all the raw hides and skins centres in the country, prices are ruling high and unchanged. Even in Erode cow hides are in good demand as many exporters need this item and operate there. But it is felt that the present situation will not continue for long.
Exporters of leather and shoes show interest for tanned and wet blue goat skins at different prices depending on the quality and selection. These items continue to be in good demand. High quality ABC suedes are sold at around Rs. 58/60, Linings at around Rs.40/- and Lots (goods consisting of different selections) at around Rs. 50/- Financial crunch seems to be everywhere in the industry. Many exporters are forced to get support from small investors in purchasing wet blue and tanned skins from the market for cash. (Indian Leather, November 2011) -------------------------------------------------