With a ready domestic market in the uniformed services and schools across Kenya, the Treasury has outlined measures that will see it create roughly 100,000 jobs per year in the leather industry.
The 2023 Budget Policy Statement proposes to reinstate hides and skins buyers, exporters, and importers licenses, map out existing MSMEs in the leather industry value chain in Narok, Athi-River, Isiolo, and Wajir as well as support the set up of processing clusters in Isiolo, Wajir, Narok, Ewaso Ng’iro as part of the measures to revive the industry.
The government also plans to complete the development of Kenya Leather Industrial Park (KLIP), in Kenanie Athi River through the provision of industrial power sub-station, storage, reticulation of water; ICT infrastructure, and security; and upgrading of road network to enhance access to the factory.
To enhance the market, the government plans to provide MSMEs in the sector with buyers such as the uniformed forces, schools, and other institutions to provide a market for locally made leather wears; and enhance market linkages for finished leather goods and export-bound leather goods.
According to Economic Survey 2022, the leather sub-sector grew by 15.6 percent in 2021 mainly due to an increase of 30.5 percent in finished leather. In the year under focus, the production of footwear with uppers of leather and those with outer soles and uppers of rubber or plastic increased by 22.9 and 5.7 percent respectively.