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Kenyan officials in Turkey to woo investors in leather sector

29 January 2015, 09:19

Nairobi - Kenya's government officials are in Turkey to woo more investors in the leather sector as the east African nation plans to establish a Leather City, a fully-fledged product development facility.

A statement issued in Nairobi said on Wednesday Industrialization and Enterprise Development Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohamed is in Turkey to meet industrialists and investors in the sector.

"Kenya is offering a world class investment location with the proposed Leather Zone and we encourage global players based in Turkey to invest in Kenya," Mohamed said when he met Erdal Matras, president of Turkey Leather Industries Association.

The CS said the government is taking its renewed focus on the leather sector right to the door steps of the world's best players in the industry.

The investor session was attended by a 30-member strong delegation of investors in tanning, footwear, garments and saddlery from Turkey.

Kenya is looking to create jobs in the sector that employs nearly 1.5 million people both directly and indirectly in Turkey.

The ministry has announced plans to set up an integrated Leather City near Nairobi, whose master-planning is ongoing and is due for ground-breaking in coming weeks.

Kenya has in the past established measures to prop up the leather industry, such as increasing export duty on raw hides and skins as well as budget allocations for development of tanneries in rural areas.

Also read: Govt plans to set up Leather City in Athi River

These steps, Mohamed said, have helped to discourage export of raw hides and skins, and boosted the sector because of semi- processing of the products.

The Leather City is expected to generate revenue for the government and create employment opportunities in developing finished leather goods.

The park will house tanneries, a training center, common manufacturing facilities, chemical storage and distribution units, leather goods' accessories production units and a Common Effluent Treatment Plant (ETP).

The Leather City will also accommodate facilities from the service sector including business centers and those from the hospitality industry.

The initial phase will target at least 15 tanneries, each with a production capacity of 10 tonnes of raw hides and skins per day, and at least 10,000 pairs of shoes, hand bags, leather garments and industrial gloves each per day.

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- Xinhua


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