Footwear sector shows promising jobs growth

Footwear sector shows promising jobs growth

2014-09-01 07:42

Johannesburg - Employment in the footwear and leather sector has grown by 5% between 2012 and 2014, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies Sunday.

"What we've actually seen is that this industry to a high degree has stabilised," he said during his visit to House of Monatic factory in Cape Town.

He said the growth stabilised the industry and enabled it to establish 11 new companies.

"We have through the incentive programme deployed through the production incentive part of it R2.46bn and (a) further R645m through the competitiveness improvement programme," said Davies.

He said government prioritised the sector and has been supporting the establishment of national clusters to raise competitiveness.

"In addition to the enterprise level support programmes we have supported the national fashion council to the tune of R33m, the footwear and leather cluster to the tune of R79m and cotton cluster to the tune of R120m."

His visit coincided with the launch of the department of trade and industry (DTI) factories campaign, which would be rolling out to the factories.

Five years ago, House of Monatic found itself on the edge of closing down, through the DTI's intervention they survived shutting down.

"This particular company has received support to the tune of roughly R30m over the period and we can see that has gone into purchasing acquisition of new machinery which has enabled the cutting operation to take place much more competitively and much more accurately than before.

"There are new sewing machines that have been acquired through that support program. The other thing that we saw concretely on the ground was that this company is producing uniforms for South African Airways cabin staff," he said.

House of Monatic chairperson Fred Robertson said the support they have received from government has enabled them to keep 800 jobs in the company.