Business operators dealing in hides and skins have called on the government to help them improve the quality of skin products.
They made the appeal upon completion of a weeklong training that brought together all entrepreneurs in the business which took place at Grace Hotel in Nyamirambo.
“We have good skins in Rwanda but we have had poor quality leather products, government should put in more efforts if we have to improve quality of our skins,” Leonille Niyonsaba told The New Times after the training.
According to Niyonsaba, the hides and skins sector is another source of employment and revenues that cannot be underestimated giving an example of Ethiopia where she was on a study tour recently.
She said that in one of Ethiopia’s skin factories, about 2,000 shoes were manufactured in a day and an estimated 80 percent of employees were women.
Niyonsaba added that the training earned them skills to identify quality skins, how to preserve, protect and understand its value.
The training which was facilitated and financed by the Centre for Support to Small and Medium Enterprises in Rwanda (CAPMER) included owners of butcheries, skin dealers and those working in Tanneries.
The head of Agri-business department in CAPMER, John Ndikuwera, noted that related trainings are due next year for different categories to improve the quality and quantity of leather in the country. He however emphasized that CAPMER only gives technical but not financial support unlike what some people believe.
Eusebe Muhikira the coordinator of entrepreneurship development unit revealed that CAPMER sets aside an annual budget of Rwf300m for agri-business support.
He added that CAPMER will always intervene in areas an entrepreneur has weakness, be it in management, production or marketing.