COTANCE president Andreas Kindermann (Wollsdorf Leather, Austria) was received by DG GROW director Slawomir Tokarski to address the state of play of the leather authenticity dossier.

Mr Tokarski was assisted by the head of unit in charge of the leather industry, Mrs Anna Athanasopoulou, and Mrs Katarzyna Kuske, dossier manager, while Mr Kindermann led a small COTANCE delegation composed of Mr Luca Boltri (UNIC, IT), Mrs Sophie Hivert (FFTM, FR), Mr Kerry Senior (UKLF, UK) and Mr Gustavo Gonzalez-Quijano (COTANCE secretary general).

Mr Kindermann emphasised the importance for Europe’s leather industry to have a legislative instrument that protects leather from fakes and consumers from being misled. He assured the commission that member state governments stand behind the industry and that the sector’s network of national trade associations stands ready to assist Mr Tokarski’s services in anything that they may need for furthering the legislative process. An appointment after the summer break was agreed for discussing a complement of information that was handed over in the encounter.

Mr Tokarski indicated that due to next year’s nomination of a new commission, it would be now too late for initiating a legislative process as the leather industry requests and which is in line with the impact assessment report and the public consultation launched by DG Grow in 2013 and 2014. But he raised the expectations of COTANCE to reference this pending business in the vision paper for the new commission.