Bangladesh: Tanners to start buying rawhide from Saturday

DHAKA (The Daily Star/ANN) - General Secretary of Bangladesh Tanners Association says tanners to buy salt-applied rawhide starting from Saturday to ease the plight of seasonal traders.

Tanners will start buying rawhide from merchants today (Saturday) amid a slump in prices and dumping of 35 percent rawhide after the Eid-ul-Azha.

“We have already conveyed the message to our members that we will start buying salt-applied rawhide from tomorrow [today]. Purchasing will continue for the next two months,” Shakawat Ullah, general secretary of Bangladesh Tanners Association, told The Daily Star yesterday.

“We had originally planned to buy rawhide from August 20. However, we have moved the date forward as many seasonal traders have already thrown away some rawhide due to poor demand,” he added.

Shakawat said they would buy rawhide at government fixed rates. Rawhide would be bought directly from merchants and also through agents appointed previously.

Before the Eid, the commerce ministry had fixed the prices of salt-applied rawhide of cows and buffaloes at Tk 45-50 per square foot in the capital and Tk 35-40 elsewhere.

The price of rawhide of castrated goats was fixed at Tk 18-20 per square foot. For un-castrated goats, the price was set at Tk 13-15.

The prices were fixed after consultations with ministries, different divisions and de-partments concerned, tanners, and merchants.

The rates were fixed for rawhide merchants and tanners. However, there was no fixed rate for small traders who collect rawhide at the field level.

Some 35 percent of more than 1.18 crore pieces of rawhide were thrown away by sea-sonal traders after the Eid-ul-Azha on Monday, mainly due to slack market monitoring by the government, a syndication of some tanners and merchants, and merchants’ lack of capital to buy rawhide.

MERCHANTS EXPRESS DOUBT

Merchants yesterday expressed doubt whether tanners could buy rawhide from today.

Delwar Hossain, president of Bangladesh Hide and Skin Merchants’ Association, said, “I have doubt that the tanners can start buying rawhide from tomorrow [today] as the commerce minister has already called a meeting at his ministry office for Sunday to dis-cuss the situation.”

That’s why the tanners may not start buying rawhide before tomorrow, he told this correspondent.

Delwar said they were waiting to get their arrears from the tanners. “Tanners have to clear the arrears before beginning fresh purchase of rawhide.”

The present crisis in rawhide trade stemmed from non-payment of more than Tk 400 crore to merchants by tanners, he claimed.

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