Regulate leather prices: call

Ministry of Industry, Trade and Marketing has been urged to work on a mechanism that would help regulate the per-kilo price of leather to set a balance of trade among suppliers, exporters and other players in the industry.

This was said during a meeting that brought together leather stakeholders on the one hand and the ministries of Industry, Trade and Marketing and that of Livestock and Fisheries Development on the other recently in Dar es Salaam.

Tanzania Trade Development Authority’s director of Domestic Market Development, who also chaired the meeting Edwin Rutageruka asked officials from the two ministries to work on the challenge in order to benefit the sub-sector.

“It is important the government steps in and puts in place mechanisms for fairness in the sub-sector,” said Mr Rutageruka.

The argument received the support of the director of Industrial Development from the ministry of Industry, Trade and Marketing, Mr Ellaine Sikazwe, who said a price mechanism was an important tool in establishing fair competition in business.

“We take it as a challenge in our area,” said director Sikazwe.Stakeholders aired their grievances over the matter, pointing an accusing finger  at suppliers.

“It is very discouraging, suppliers sell me a kilo of skin at between Sh1,000 and 1,200, while in other areas the same product is sold at much less,” complained the managing director of Morogoro Tannery, Mr Onorato Garavagli.

According to the stakeholders leather prices differed from one area to the other. They gave rough estimates for some of the regions, prices have been given in brackets: Mbeya (800/- to 900/-); Mwanza (1,200/- to 1,300/-) and Dar es Salaam (800/- to 900/-).

Tanzania livestock population as per 2011 statistics shows that it has a total of 21.3 million cattle, 15.2 million goats and 6.4 million sheep. The country mainly exports leather products to Pakistan, China, UK, Kenya and Uganda.
Source: The Citizen,www.thecitizen.co.tz, reported by Felix Lazaro

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