11 June 2024

Europe - EU elections: manufacturing sectors ‘must not be left behind’

As the 2024 elections to the European Parliament began on June 6, the leather industry’s main representative body in the European Union (EU), COTANCE, and its counterpart for the footwear industry, CEC, repeated their call for politicians to safeguard the future of leather and shoe production in Europe. Report by Leatherbiz.

Earlier this year, COTANCE and CEC joined colleagues representing the textiles industry and around 200 other business organisations in signing the so-called Antwerp Declaration.

This calls on the European Commission to preserve quality manufacturing jobs in the EU.

As voters began choosing the members that will make up the new European Parliament, COTANCE and its immediate social partners issued a statement to remind candidates that textiles, clothing, footwear and leather manufacturing currently provides more than 1.5 million jobs in the EU. They added that these industrial sectors generate a combined turnover of more than €200 billion per year.

However, the statement said, these industries continue to face “fierce global competition, high energy prices, an ageing workforce, and a huge increase in new legislation”. Something that makes these challenges even more difficult to overcome is that more than 99% of the companies involved in making these products in Europe are small or medium enterprises.

The statement called on politicians to make sure the leather, footwear and textiles sectors “can become green and digital while remaining competitive in the global market, and that no region, company or worker is left behind”.

About APLF

We bring leather, material and fashion businesses together: an opportunity to meet and greet face to face. We bring them from all parts of the world so that they can find fresh partners, discover new customers or suppliers and keep ahead of industry developments.


We organise a number of trade exhibitions which focus on fashion and lifestyle: sectors that are constantly in flux, so visitors and exhibitors alike need to be constantly aware both of the changes around them and those forecast for coming seasons.


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