Ukrainian footwear producers have made a breakthrough in the Canadian market

Six leading Ukrainian footwear producers took part in the Toronto Shoe Show on February 20-22. Overall more than 700 Canadian and European brands participated at the international exhibition.

Ukrainian shoe industry was presented by such well-known trademarks as:

  • Belsta (Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky, one of the largest producers of indoor footwear in Ukraine);
  • Caman (Brovary, stylish men’s and women’s shoes, specialized sports shoes);
  • KaDar (Lutsk, casual men’s shoes);
  • Kredo (Khmelnytskiy, winter shoes on EBA sole);
  • Litma (Khmelnytskiy, rubber footwear);
  • Olteya (Zhytomyr, women’s leather shoes).

Ukrainian producers have already taken part in the Toronto Shoe Show last August.  It has prompted the companies to work more seriously, and with greater dedication and better preparation. They took into account all the recommendations of Canadian expert of the CUTIS project Phil Zwibel and upgraded the models.

‘Five of six Ukrainian producers have already delivered their samples to Canadian buyers, now three deals are almost on a finish line. That’s a wonderful achievement after only 6 months of appearance in Canada. Because in order to succeed in North America you have to modify your products according to the market and customers preferences. I’m glad that Ukrainian producers overcame this way to consumers in such a short time,’ Phil Zwibel said.

Ukrainian companies were presented at Toronto Shoe Show under the export support program “U CAN Export” of the CUTIS project.

‘Free trade with Canada opens up new business opportunities for Ukraine which faces the challenge of diversifying export flows. The example of footwear producers demonstrates that Ukrainian product is a great combination of high quality and reasonable prices,’ Ihor Sanzharovsky, CUTIS Project Director in Ukraine concluded.

The Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA) entered into force on August 1, 2017, and opened customs-free access to 98% of Canada’s market for Ukrainian companies. Canada’s situation is more complex. The duties were eliminated for 72% of Canadian goods. The customs tariffs for the rest of 27% will be gradually reduced in compliance with transition periods – 3, 5, and 7 years.

The Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) Project is a 5-year (2016-2021) Canadian development assistance initiative designed to lower poverty in Ukraine through increasing exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. The project funded by the Canadian Government through the Global affairs Canada and implemented by the Conference Board of Canada in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce.

The CUTIS project implements U CAN EXPORT Support Program in five priority sectors: clothing, footwear, furniture, confectionery, and IT services.