Footwear employment growing in Brazil
The small upturn in the number of Brazilian shoemakers since January is being viewed as a sign of recovery.
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According to Brazilian footwear industry body Abicalçados, the country’s combined shoemaking workforce of just under 266,000 people at the end of February 2021 represented a decrease of 6.4 per cent compared to the same period a year ago. However, this was said to have grown by 18,600 since the end of 2020.
The association’s executive president, Haroldo Ferreira, commented that the recovery of employment in the early part of this year was important. “It’s a sign of the recovery the footwear industry began to experience in the final months of last year,” he said, adding: “it’s most likely to be a reaction to restocking activities in retail.”
There were mixed messages from different shoemaking centres around the country. The employment level in Rio Grande do Sul’s footwear sector was down by 11.4 per cent year-on-year at the end of February, totalling 81,900, and São Paulo experienced a fall of 16.3 per cent over the same period to a total of 29,630. In contrast, the north eastern state of Ceará reportedly has 59,900 personnel working in footwear – an increase of 5.1 per cent over the same period in 2020. Shoemaking jobs in Bahia have also been boosted by 2.2 per cent compared to last year, with employment now standing at 30,380.
This article was originally published on page 4 of the May 2021 issue of SATRA Bulletin.