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Overview of the Indian Footwear Industry

August 04, 2021

India is the world's second largest shoe-making country, with an annual output of about 2.2 billion pairs of various types of footwear, of which 200 million pairs are exported and 2 billion pairs are sold domestically.

At present, the average person in India buys 1.7 pairs of shoes each year. Casual shoes occupies a dominant position in the Indian footwear market, accounting for nearly two-thirds of the retail market; followed by men’s shoes, accounting for 58% of the Indian domestic retail market; non-leather footwear has nearly 1.23 billion pairs, accounting for nearly two-thirds of the retail market. Than 56%.

There are currently about 15,000 companies in the Indian shoe industry, of which the vast majority are small and medium-sized enterprises, accounting for 85%. The competition between such loosely managed small and medium-sized enterprises and large enterprises with well-established systems is fierce. No distinction is made.

Shoemaking is a labor-intensive industry that provides employment opportunities for more than one million people in India and is the main source of income for low-income groups and ethnic minorities. The jobs created in several industries, such as shoemaking, textiles and garments, are second only to agriculture. More than half of the workers in the shoe industry are female workers. In the south, which is highly mechanized and has a more complete system, such as Tamil Nadu, Kerala and other shoe industry groups, female workers account for more than 90%.

Professionals estimate that if India can basically reach the level of per capita footwear consumption in developed countries by 2030, that is, if each person buys 6 pairs of shoes per year, its domestic market will be as high as 80 billion US dollars; even if the per capita purchase of shoes is as low as 4 Double, considering the inflation factor, the domestic market size is 45 billion U.S. dollars, and the market prospect is quite broad. Another advantage of the Indian leather shoe industry lies in its stable access to various raw materials, such as leather, skilled tanned high-quality leather, and mature leather products and footwear production capabilities. India has more than 100 advanced fully mechanized shoe factories with annual production capacity. Production capacity of 2.8 billion pairs of men's leather shoes and men's and women's uppers.

Despite the huge potential of the shoe industry, it must be pointed out that the production capacity of the Indian shoe industry has basically stagnated in the past ten years. The reason is nothing more than the loose organization of the industry and the lack of a policy environment that encourages the development of the industry.

(Compiled from the industry report of the Indian Footwear, Leather and Accessories Committee)


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