'The European Social Partners of the Leather Industry kick off their new common project'

9 February 2019

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On 7 February 2019, Gustavo Gonzalez-Quijano (COTANCE) and Laurent Zibell (industriAll-European trade union), the social partners at European level of the Leather/Tanning Sector, met to give an official start to their new social dialogue project. They will produce and publish a new social and environmental report about the European leather industry, following up on a similar project in 2012. This initiative will be carried out in the collaboration with affiliates of 10 EU member states.

It is an 18-month initiative and has received the support of the European Commission.

Starting with an intensive survey amongst European tanneries, the project will collect company data on 37 social indicators and about 39 environmental parameters that reflect the performance of the tannery. Company data will be anonymised and aggregated at national level, before being centrally computed at European level for drawing the conclusions that flow into the second social and environmental report of the European leather industry.

The report will be completed with the activities developed by the social partners together or individually between 2012 and 2019 and in particular those related to projects such as Leather is my Job!, A Future for Leather!, or Due Diligence for Healthy Workplaces in the Tanning industry; as well as the development by COTANCE of the Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEFCR) for leather, animal welfare, and traceability; and to all the initiatives that improve the image of leather, and develop education and training in the European Leather industry.

The initiative also includes the implementation of national workshops aimed at promoting the exercise and addressing hot topics related to social or environmental issues affecting the image of the leather industry.

A final conference in June/July 2020 associated with the COTANCE Assembly General where the results will be presented.

The first project meeting with all partners will be held in Brussels on 27 February.

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