The shoe is literally pinching for Agra’s famous footwear industry, with orders from the US and Europe dipping by 40 per cent for supplies due in the next summer season from March to July.
The global financial crisis took its remote victim in Agra where 75 export units account for Rs. 1,750 crore sales of the town’s Rs. 2,500-crore industry, which accounts for 60 per cent of the country’s footwear export business.
Europe and the US account for 80 per cent of the total export business.
Shahroo Mohsin, vice-president of the Agra Footwear Manufacturers and Exporters Chamber (AFMEC), said, “There is a definite sense of desperation among exporters as we are increasing the deadline by a month to receive more export orders.”
Agra-made leather shoes make it to markets that include the US, Germany, France, Holland, England, Spain, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden and West Asia.
Local shoe makers supply to well known brands such as Hush Puppies, Lee Cooper and Diesel, besides Bata.