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S&V Weekly Newsletter Vol.10 No.16, April 15 2024

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Trading conditions

Bruce Wilson, Hotter SA
Cape Town, W. Cape, SA – Trade this month started slowly but has picked up after the Cape storms earlier this week. Having said that I think that the consumer is still under huge pressure with high interest rates, cost of food and fuel and energy prices. We are fortunate to have a great brand, so we are still hoping for a good winter sell off.


U.S. retailers call on president to overturn footwear duties out of China

In an open letter last week to U.S. President Joe Biden, Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America (FDRA) president and CEO Matt Priest appealed to him to use his executive power to overturn ‘301 duties’ – punitive duties in this case imposed on footwear from China because of a dispute over microchips – which he said caused retail footwear prices in the U.S. to “climb 2 of the last 3 years at the fastest annual rate in 34 years”.
      He wrote:
      “Now footwear prices at retail are increasing again—rising year over year in March the most in 16 months—in large part due to increased 301 duties levied on American companies and paid by American consumers.
      “Ending 301 duties on shoes by executive order is the only meaningful tool you have to lower shoe prices at retail in the near term.
      “Monetary policy, task forces, or new policy reviews are not going to lower the cost of footwear. Eliminating 301 tariffs is the only clear solution for directly lowering prices on shoes that are hitting American families right now.
      “301 duties push shoe prices higher on working-class families more than nearly every other product.
      “Shoe imports are hit with an average 12 percent duty rate versus other imported goods that average around 2 percent. Working-class families bear the brunt as shoe tariff rates are regressive. Children's shoes and lower-value shoes often face import tax rates of 20 percent, 37.5 percent and can reach nearly 70 percent in some cases. The added 7.5 percent 301 duty on certain shoes escalates prices further.
      “301 duties on kids’ shoes directly led to record high shoe prices on families. “With the added 301 duty, the duty rate DOUBLED for certain children’s casual shoes and slippers, and it more than TRIPLED on certain plastic sandals, wool slippers, and infant crib shoes, directly creating record price spikes at checkout. These are shoes families must buy multiple times a year for their children.
      “It does not require any public policy reviews for this commonsense action, just the stroke of your pen to help lower shoe prices.
      “Some in your administration even support this position. In the past, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen clearly stated removing these tariffs would make a meaningful and real difference because tariffs directly raise domestic prices. We know for a fact that anything that lowers costs in the shoe supply chain translates to savings at retail due to the extremely competitive shoe retail environment; multiple retailers are often situated in the same shopping center, allowing consumers to shop for the best price.
      “Shoes are not a real negotiating tool in geopolitics, and the 301 duties are now creating greater harm than the bargaining chip the government falsely imagines.
      “You do not have to end 301 duties on all items. You can carve out breakouts on consumer goods to provide targeted inflation relief for mass market goods.
      “We understand the policy and politics behind 301 duties on microchips with national security implications. However, we are now past the tipping point where misinformed tariffs on consumer products like footwear are causing record harm to Americans versus the good intended.
      “Please act today. End 301 duties on footwear to lower prices for American families.”



Fashion with lower environmental impacts: supply chain decarbonization and durability of textile products webinar

SGS, the testing, inspection and certification company, is hosting a webinar, ‘Fashion with lower environmental impacts: supply chain decarbonization and durability of textile products’, on 25 April 2024.
      The fashion industry is regarded as a sector with a high environmental impact. Brands, retailers and suppliers are joining the transformation to circular and low-carbon fashion in response to government pressure and the need to remain competitive.
      When implementing decarbonization roadmaps, the fashion industry faces several challenges associated with supply chain carbon management and reduction. Presenters Evelyn Ma and Dr Min Zhu will explore trends and strategies for carbon reduction and share case studies of decarbonization solutions for the whole supply chain, including target setting, training and quantification.
      The EU is also concerned about the fashion industry, with a textile strategy that focuses on greater product durability to reduce the sector’s environmental footprint. In particular, France wants to work on specific topics and has suggested the introduction of a voluntary environmental labelling standard for textile products in 2024.
      Presenter Valérie Cimetière will discuss the latest updates on Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEFCR) regarding durability and the new requirements for the environmental labelling of textile products in France. She will present details of the European project and the French framework, which will both lead to changes in textile environmental labelling in the coming years.
      This event is aimed at senior management teams of brands and retailers, including sustainability/environmental health and safety/compliance managers, as well as supply chain partners.



In case you missed it!

The March issue of S&V Footwear & Leather Goods Magazine

S&V Footwear & Leather Goods Magazine Vol90 No3 March 2024


03 Upfront
- The R-CTFL Masterplan, 5 years on – Part II: At the monthly meeting to discuss progress, it becomes clear that achieving duty-free access for footwear components isn’t a straightforward process.
- A visit to 7 chains shows that it’s very hard to find locally made shoes – and very hard also to find leather footwear.
- Els Agencies: Trying to get around late orders.

08 Sport & Activewear
- Diadora: Back, and with a vision to be a complete sport and lifestyle brand.
- Diadora: Looking to take a share of the running market.
- Diadora: Background to the brand.
- Admiral: Quietly, over a long period, it has grown a business supplying mainly into the sport trade and independent retailers.

14 Headlines with Tinashe Mandirahwe
- Stitching success – exploring the future of clothing and footwear in Sub-Saharan Africa.
- Hermes in trouble in California courts over its Birkin Bag.

19 Notice Board
- Obituary: Basil Da Silva, Mendelson & Frost – The industry had many characters ‘back then’, and one has passed on.
- Obituary: Doug Patterson-Roberts, Kronies Footwear and Verona Shoes – A factory that was ‘a happy place to be’: Those were the days.

23 Trade Statistics
- South Africa: January imports and exports of footwear and accessories, provided by SARS.

Advertisers in this Issue
All China Leather Exhibition (07), Freestyle Genuine Handcrafted Leather (05), Haesloop Agencies (06), Kaytex Belts (13), Leather Finishing Products (16), Leggenda Sport/Diadora (OFC and page 08), LGB Distributors/Admiral (11), Saddler Belts (02), SAFLEC (10), S&V Calendar (01), S&V Directory (21), Shotland Packing (18).



They Said It

"Tanning machinery manufacturers are working towards developing machines with one big red button." - former South African Karl Flowers, now based in the UK and working in the global leather industry on multiple levels. His reference was to the trend towards automation.


Got anything you'd like to share?

Do you have any suggestions, comments or experiences about the industry that you'd like to share with the industry? -


New subscribers last week

Gianni Geminiani , Consulting/Training, K&G Consulting, London, UK
Steve Wagenhim, Buyer, Spree, Cape Town, South Africa


Birthdays this week

15/04/1928: Des Scott, retired, founder, Scotts [closed], Durban, KZN, SA.
15/04/1971: Jacques Ergas, Red Planet Shoes, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA.
16/04/1952: Russell Lochner, agent, Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA.
16/04/1954: Lynn Sukool, Devan's Footwear Agency, Durban, KZN, SA.
17/04/1948: William James Mail, formerly Norton Wellworth Agencies, Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA.
17/04/1957: Colin Battle, agent, Port Elizabeth, E. Cape, SA.
17/04/1971: Newald Groenewald, Le Croc Tannery, Brits, N.W. Province, SA.
18/04/1976: Neelan Parumaul, Melton Adhesives, New Germany, KZN, SA.
18/04/1989: Pratiksha Pema, Modern Tailors & Outfitters, Pretoria, Gauteng, SA.
19/04/1946: Mike Pengelly, Trailmix Trading, Durban, KZN, SA.
19/04/2000: Abdul Kader Kader, Kaytex Belts, Pretoria, Gauteng, SA.
20/04/1948: Michael Hoffmann, Max-Cowell, Port Elizabeth, E. Cape, SA.
20/04/1954: Barry Clayton, Shoe City, Port Elizabeth, E. Cape, SA.
20/04/1957: Johnny Kleynhans, ConsulTan, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
20/04/1960: Glen Mitchell, Shoprite Checkers, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA.
20/04/1963: Angie Tootla, retired, formerly The Rose Lady (closed, now Rawhide SA), Stanger/ KwaDukuza, KZN, SA.
21/04/1959: Jirka Vymĕtal, SAFLIA, Durban, KZN, SA.
21/04/1972: Stanton Pullen, reportedly working in Japan.


In memoriam this week

16/04/2016: Barrie Walsh (b. 19/03/1949), Eddels Shoes, Pietermaritzburg, KZN, SA.
16/04/2023: Shelagh Davy (b. 18/02/1943), retired, formerly editor of Leather International, St Leonard's-on-Sea, East Sussex, UK.
17/04/2021: Mike Peterkin (b. 30/08/1945), agent, Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA.
18/04/2020: Val Barnes (b. 13/02/1943), retired to the UK, formerly Edcon, Durban, KZN, SA.
19/04/2019: Raymond Manuel (b. 12/06/1963), Kronies (closed), Villani, Barker, Bolton Footwear, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA.
20/04/2015: Moira Pascall, Economic Shoe Store, Paarl, W. Cape, SA.
21/04/2012: MG Moodley (b. 08/04/1922), MG Shoes/Ballucci Footwear [both closed], Pietermaritzburg, KZN, SA.

Have you let us know about your birthday, or the birthdays of your colleagues? Our readers love this section, so please become part of it. This also applies to the In Memoriam section. Help us remember former colleagues.


Directory entries updated this week

Andy Williams Agencies, Cape Town, W. Cape SA.
Cheftrapps (Pty) Ltd, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA.
Cruz Footwear (Pty) Ltd, Durban, KZN, SA.
Raymond Schutte Agencies, Krugersdorp, Gauteng, SA.
RBE Agencies (Pty) Ltd, East London, E. Cape, SA.
Roger & Andy Agencies cc, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA.
Students’ Schoolwear & Sports cc, Randburg, Gauteng, SA.
Wiesner, Gus, Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA.
World of Workwear (Pty) Ltd, Germiston, Gauteng, SA.





Exchange rates

Note: For previous rates, see HERE

1. SA Rand (ZAR)/Lesotho Loti (LSL)/Namibian Dollar (NAD)/Swazi Lilangeni (SZL)


  Euro € GBP £ US $ CNY ¥
02/01/2024 R20.30 R23.42 R18.54 R2.60
06/01/2024 R20.45 R23.77 R18.68 R2.61
13/01/2024 R20.44 R23.79 R18.65 R2.62
20/01/2024 R20.71 R24.14 R19.01 R2.67
27/01/2024 R20.39 R23.85 R18.78 R2.64
05/02/2024 R20.41 R23.89 R18.98 R2.64
10/02/2024 R20.52 R24.03 R19.03 R2.64
17/02/2024 R20.35 R23.80 R18.89 R2.62
24/02/2024 R20.91 R24.40 R19.30 R2.68
02/03/2024 R20.71 R24.17 R19.11 R2.65
09/03/2024 R20.48 R24.07 R18.72 R2.60
16/03/2024 R20.43 R23.89 R18.75 R2.60
23/03/2024 R20.59 R23.93 R18.99 R2.62
01/04/2024 R20.37 R23.83 R18.96 R2.62
06/04/2024 R20.24 R23.60 R18.67 R2.58
13/04/2024 R20.08 R23.48 R18.85 R2.60

2. Botswana Pula (BWP)


  Euro € GBP £ US $ CNY ¥
02/01/2024 14.66 16.91 13.39 1.88
06/01/2024 14.78 17.19 13.51 1.89
13/01/2024 18.81 17.24 13.52 1.89
20/01/2024 14.86 17.33 13.64 1.91
27/01/2024 14.77 17.28 13.61 1.91
05/02/2024 14.73 17.24 13.70 1.90
10/02/2024 14.77 17.29 13.70 1.90
17/02/2024 14.77 17.28 13.71 1.90
24/02/2024 14.92 17.41 13.77 1.91
02/03/2024 14.90 17.39 13.74 1.91
09/03/2024 15.01 17.64 13.72 1.90
16/03/2024 14.80 17.30 13.58 1.88
23/03/2024 14.79 17.19 13.64 1.88
01/04/2024 14.77 17.28 13.75 1.90
06/04/2024 14.86 17.34 13.71 1.89
13/04/2024 14.55 17.01 13.66 1.88

3. Malawian Kwacha (MWK)


  Euro € GBP £ US $ ZAR
10/02/2024 1849.26 2165.66 1666.73 90.57
17/02/2024 1847.37 2160.68 1666.73 90.73
24/02/2024 1858.36 2173.21 1666.73 91.40
02/03/2024 1855.79 2167.03 1666.73 91.32
09/03/2024 1878.96 2198.79 1666.73 91.92
16/03/2024 NA NA NA NA
23/03/2024 1916.05 2234.16 1716.73 93.54
01/04/2024 1913.05 2232.75 1716.73 93.36
06/04/2024 1914.11 2232.22 1716.73 94.51
13/04/2024 1889.00 2213.30 1716.73 94.21

4. Zambian Kwacha (ZMW)


  Euro € GBP £ US $ ZAR
10/02/2024 29.04 33.99 26.96 1.41
17/02/2024 27.36 31.96 25.40 1.34
24/02/2024 24.91 29.19 22.99 1.19
02/03/2024 25.48 29.77 23.56 1.22
09/03/2024 26.25 30.78 24.14 1.28
16/03/2024 27.33 32.00 25.09 1.34
23/03/2024 28.52 33.25 26.36 1.38
01/04/2024 26.90 31.45 24.88 1.31
06/04/2024 26.66 31.06 24.69 1.32
13/04/2024 26.52 31.05 24.94 1.32

5. Zimbabwe Dollar (ZWL$) (average) / Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG)

Source: Source:

  Euro € GBP £ US$ ZAR
10/02/2024 12335.25 14448.09 11450.66 40.42
17/02/2024 13556.38 15850.40 12597.58  
24/02/2024 14868.38 17396.60 13736.36  
02/03/2024 16324.79 19062.07 15098.03  
09/03/2024 17235.24 20160.26 15742.82  
16/03/2024 19794.68 23183.11 18201.92  
23/03/2024 NA NA NA NA
01/04/2024 23536.57 26305.85 20824.77  
06/04/2024 31099.56 36262.23 28729.38  
13/04/2024 ZIG 14.01 ZIG 16.40.23 ZIG 13.08 ZIG 1.36

Note: For previous rates, see HERE




ABSA Agri Trends: Hides & skins prices

Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA (11 April 2024) - The average hide price decreased by 1.6% to R3.41/kg from R3.47/kg a week ago. The current price is 3.9% higher than the average price a month ago and 0.7% higher than the average price a year ago. The range of prices reported was as follows: Minimum price: R3.00 Maximum price: R3.50. Please note: Our methodology weighs the prices we collect according to the number of hides they sell in a month. This is done to make it more representative of the prevailing market price. NB* Hide prices are determined by the average of the RMAA (Red Meat Abattoir Association) and independent companies. - Marlene Louw, senior agricultural economist, and Nkhensani Mashimbyi, agricultural economist, and Zama Sangweni, agricultural economist, Absa group.

Note: For previous prices, see HERE


Have a look at these links

We invite businesses to send us links to websites, Facebook pages and the like which they feel would be of interest to others. The links below are from our database:

Studio 88, Roodepoort, Gauteng, SA. Men’s & women’s footwear & clothing.
Studio Leathers, Cape Town, W. Cape, SA. Leather shoe and handbag retailer.


Contact us

News & Classifieds: Tony Dickson, +27 (0)31 209 7505,

Next newsletter: April 22, 2024. Ad and editorial deadline Friday 19 April.

SAFLIA enquiries: Tel 0800SAFLIA * Email * Website

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