A challenging 2018, an uncertain 2019: The International Council of Tanners (ICT) evaluates the global challenges faced by the leather industry, while in Hong Kong

The conclusions of a complex 2018. The possible developments of 2019, which doesn’t seem to be destined to be the year that cancels doubts and concerns. The annual ICT (International Council of Tanners) convention took place today in Hong Kong, and it created a round table at which all the main tanning associations of the world were sitting at. Under an economical point of view, the situation confirms the general uncertainty of the last few months, particularly due to the complications that rose inside the footwear and automotive segments. The slowdowns in Brazil’s and Chinese production were in the double digits, while Japan and USA remain static. The year was also difficult for Italian tanners (which confirms its qualitative, innovative, and sustainable leadership), and for European ones as well. Lisa Howett (American entrepreneur owner of Auburn Leather, tannery that just became a part of the ISA TanTec group), has just celebrated her first year at the presidency of ICT, and she has shifted the focus toward some key points regarding the chain. First objective is adding value to the material (leather), which will be the focus of the fourth edition of the World Leather Congress (New York, July 16th, the day before Lineapelle New York) which is an important moment for the global promotion of the material, as well as developing the relationships with international entities (such as the collaboration with FAO). Second objective is the growth of segment-specific platforms to certify sustainability (ICEC, CSCB), as well the resolution of technical issues regarding the measurement of leather pieces. The focus will also be placed on monitoring the levels of meat consumption (analysis of the US market) and the evolution of the commercial relationships between the great super powers (USA and China).

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