Incentive Package for Leather, Footwear Sector Likely Soon
The Union Cabinet is expected to soon take a decision on Rs 2,600 crore incentive package for the labour-intensive leather and footwear sector to boost exports and job creation, official sources have said. The proposal was mooted by the commerce and industry ministry.
The final proposal has been sent to the cabinet and "we are hopeful that the cabinet would soon take a decision on this," sources, who do not wish to be named, said.
The package, which includes both tax and non-tax benefits, was prepared on the lines of the steps announced for the textiles sector last year.
The package for the textiles sector included relaxation in certain labour laws, income tax concession, 100 per cent employer's contribution to EPFO (Employees' Provident Fund Organisation) by government, rebate of state levies for exports, etc.
The ministry has sought tax incentives for the footwear, leather, and accessories development programme. The sector assumes significance as it is a thrust segment under the 'Make in India' initiative.
As per industry experts, Rs 1 crore investment in the sector results in creation of jobs for about 250 people. Currently, about 30 lakh people are directly employed in the sector.
In global market, China is giving a tough competition to Indian leather manufacturers in terms of pricing. Exports of leather and leather products dipped by about 9 per cent to USD 369.24 million in October.
The Indian industry is mainly dominated with products made up of synthetic leather. It accounts for about 90 per cent of the total leather manufacturing in the country.