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The formal opening of a new Common Facility Centre (CFC) for the leather industry in Jalandhar, Punjab took place on September 11. The CFC Jalandhar was formally inaugurated by Madan Mohan Mittal, Minister for Industry and Commerce, Technical Education & Industrial Training, Government of Punjab in the presence of senior leather industry representatives.
The CFC has three floors, with total area of 7500 sq ft. The facilities at the CFC include a product display hall (1550 sq ft), conference hall (1150 sq ft), resource centre (500 sq ft) and the regional office of the India Council for Leather Exports (1000 sq ft).
The Foundation Stone for the CFC Jalandhar project was laid by Rajendra Kumar Jalan, Chairman, Council for Leather Exports on May 17, 2013 at the project site with R. Ramesh Kumar IAS, Executive Director, Council for Leather Exports (CLE).
The Indian leather industry is not only a major foreign exchange earner for the country but one of the largest employment providers, particularly for weaker sections of the society.
Exports from the leather sector have grown from US$3.4 billion in 2009-10 to an all time high value of US$6 billion in 2013-14. Exports are projected to grow at more than 20% in the next five years. The domestic market for leather, leather products and footwear, which is presently around US$5 billion, is also expected to grow in the next 5 years.
In line with the national trend, the leather industry is Punjab has also achieved significant growth in the recent years. According to membership records of the CLE, the export of leather and leather products from Punjab increased from Rs.216.97 crore in 2008-09 crore to Rs.342.30 crore in 2012-13 (1 crore = 10 million). The major export items are finished leather, leather footwear, leather goods and leather garments. Jalandhar is a major production centre for finished leather, leather goods, footwear and leather garments, contributing a share of more than 80% of the exports from Punjab.