NDS1 to harness leather industry value chain

By Owen Mandova
The Government has identified the leather industry value chain as key to import substitution initiatives under the National Development Strategy One.
In its quest to revitalise the ailing leather industry after years of decline, the National Development Strategy One policy blueprint illustrates in detail a myriad of headwinds affecting the sector and proffers solutions for transformation.
With the leather industry provides vast import substitution opportunities, a visit to a leading abattoir in Harare gave insight into some of these challenges which need to be addressed.
“The cost of processing leather is very high because the chemicals need to be imported also the quality of hides is  low because of our cattle which are affected by ticks .
“Harnessing the entire leather industry value chain which is intertwined with the livestock sector is therefore urgently required.”
“The industry is not a standalone one and it directly feeds from the livestock sector creating a need for a wholesome approach which also should ensure that we produce better quality hides.”
Viability challenges prompted abattoirs to dump hides but of late some operators have been exporting these raw hides to China where it is processed into finished products and then reimported into the country as finished products.

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