India’s Uttar Pradesh at a standstill, tanneries close in Tamil Nadu. JBS Couros sense the business

India’s daily news mirrors the difficult situation the country is currently dealing with. The latest news is about restrictive measures taken against two tanneries, located near Ambur, in the province of Tamil Nadu, which belong to T Abdul Wahid Tanneries group. In fact, the government Pollution Board, who oversees the environmental monitoring, found out that the company, specialized in the processing of semi-finished products into finished leather, was not compliant with the facilities adaptation to standards, in terms of environmental sustainability, formerly imposed by authorities. Because of it, they have not renewed their work licence, which expired last 31 March; on top of that, authorities have forced both tanneries to suspend their activities until further notice. In the meantime, in Uttar Pradesh the tanning leather districts are still facing the three-month-long mandatory closure imposed in observance of the Kumbh Mela, Hindu’s ritual pilgrimage to the river Ganges.

Brazilian opportunism

We interviewed Taj Alam, vice-president of UPLIA (Uttar Pradesh Leather Industries Association). While speaking about consequences, in the industry business, of the three-month-long mandatory closure, he highlighted a loss of trust and reliability in front of international and local customers: it is no coincidence that buyers “have already started exploring a few alternative markets, such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, Vietnam and Brazil”, he remarked. His standpoint is being confirmed by JBS Couros specific intents, made public on the eve of the India International Leather Fair. As reported by LeatherBiz, the Brazilian giant assembled a team to examine the business opportunities in the country. JBS Couros consider New Delhi to be “the leather industry which is bound to potentially expand most worldwide in the years to come”.  

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