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Shoes Made In Haiti: Opportunities For Domestic Growth And The Youth

Haiti's Hidden Treasures

DVD Documentary

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Haiti's Hidden Treasures

DVD Documentary

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Reviving the shoe industry in Haiti is one of the boldest initiative that any entrepreneurs could undertake in a country where the majority of the people wears imported shoes. Engineer Jean Lucien Ligondé hid no fear and instead pursued his goals not only to create the first modern shoe manufacturer in Haiti, but also launched a showroom in Pétion-Ville that exposed a wide variety of local shoes. The CEO of JL Fine Shoes manufacturer says that his initiative aims to contribute to the recovery of domestic products and to reactivate local production in order to satisfy local demand. In addition, he wants to attract the international market while offering training and job opportunities for young people, particularly those in the metropolitan area.

Workers in the shoe manufacture

The factory located nearby the airport boulevard recruited 150 young people mostly at Cité Soleil and Carrefour Feuilles who benefited from several months of training, then employed to produce the work in three stages. Trimming, sewing, manipulating imported leather in several manners to transform the designed pieces into beautiful pair of shoes. According to Jean Lucien Ligondé, JL Fine Shoes long-term goals is to create 10 similar plants throughout the country and be able to produce up to 12,000 pairs of shoes per day. "I am ready to create between 4000 and 5000 youth jobs within a year for a production of 800 to 1000 pairs of shoes per day." His great vision, he added, is to encourage the rise of a strengthened middle class, boost the economy, and ensure that 30% of the actions of the manufacture go to these young people. He also urged the Haitian government to put in place trade policies that will enable them to compete with other shoe manufacturers.

A variety of men, girl, kid shoes

JL Fine Shoes, which started with a Haitian designer, have invited also an American to join the manufacturing industry. They signed a contract with Elitech, a Taiwanese firm, that provided them with professional Taiwanese shoe makers who guide them into following the proper procedure for manufacturing the products. With such an initiative, the entrepreneur intends to reverse the market of used shoes commonly named "pèpè".

 

Pursuing their goals on providing opportunities to the youth from disadvantaged neighborhoods, JL Fine Shoes Inc. introduces these young people to a modern, mechanized, and international production system. They make up the labor force of this manufacture, and they will be initiated into the shoe making career path and in for some, a trip abroad will familiarize them with mechanized production system boots. JL Fine Shoes S.A. selected the participants and simultaneously provided financial support to the National Vocational Training Institute (INFP), who in turn provided the staff and training.

 

Last edited 11/17/16

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