A Chinese Hong Kong? Nothing changes
A break in leathergoods


«Opening of markets is vitally important»
Roeland Smets, chairman of Cec, briefly summed up the situation of European footwear, that maintains its production levels but loses ground on sales in Europe:
"To start with, it is evident that the interests of independent specialized retailers and the majority of European manufacturers are closely linked. So it becomes necessary in the community to create incentives in that sense. Consumption in Europe is marked by caution and this constitutes a sort of challenge for firms but the opening of markets would greatly relieve the pressure on the domestic one. The major problem for the European footwear trade is still that of access to export outlets. With the exception of North America all nations are closed or protected by customs and other barriers. Among the principal outlets I would indicate China, India, the Cis and Brazil; anyway Europe is interested in global presence throughout the world. In fact it is only by spreading firms’ "risks" over a greater number of markets that manufacturers can give balance to their future. Fortunately European production retains its innovative and creative nature, without indulging in standardization, which would be dangerous for its work".


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