EU shoe manufacturers will boost exports to Mercosur countries

A  trade agreement was signed between the European Union and the countries of the MERCOSUR bloc (Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay). Thus the negotiations that have been conducted for more than 20 years ended. For all European shoe manufacturers, including the shoe sector in Italy, this was a breakthrough into the markets of South and Latin America.

Although the abolition of customs duties on shoes will have to wait a few more years, in the future it will bring significant benefits to the entire Italian shoe industry .In the last year alone, the export of shoes from Italy to the four countries of MERCOSUR amounted to 303,000 pairs worth more than € 15.5 million. Moreover, over the past 10 years (2008–2018), according to a study by Confindustria Moda, this market has grown by 58% in volume and 85% in value and its growth potential is far from being exhausted.

The high import duties that have been applied by the countries of the Mercosur block for several years (35% for all types of shoes) did not allow Italian companies to gain access to the market even despite the strong attractiveness of Italian products in South America.

“The trade agreement with MERCOSUR is an extremely positive result for the entire shoe sector in Italy - for many years it has been one of our priorities in Brussels,” said the new head of Assocalzaturifici Ciro Badon. - I would like to thank everyone who represented us in these long and difficult negotiations, especially Confindustria Moda, which represented the interests of all industrial enterprises in this process. And although the terms of the agreement are not yet public, the Italian footwear sector hopes that, together with customs tariff agreements, it can also count on the introduction of common industry standards and the speedy ratification of the entire process. ”