The proposal of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia on the labeling (chipping) of shoes caused a heated discussion among experts and participants in the shoe market. Opinions were divided, their arguments “for” and “against” are given by manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and officials. SR conducted a small survey among market participants whose opinions we publish.
“Honestly, I don’t take seriously the idea of marking shoes, because I don’t see the point for our segment. There are excise stamps in Belarus, so what? This is inconvenient, disadvantageous and no one needs, except that the state earns conditional 50 kopecks on this. This creates great difficulties for private entrepreneurs who import and sell shoes. I don’t see what else this can lead to, except for additional costs, and everything will fall on the shoulders of consumers. It is believed that shoe chipping will help limit gray imports, but it seems to me that this is just a method of unfair competition. If the state is talking about this part of the shoe community, then it recognizes its impotence to corruption. ”
I consider shoe marking a very good initiative, our company fully supports it. Labeling will have a positive impact not only on the entire market, which will become more transparent every day, this initiative will benefit the country's economy as a whole. The experience of chipping fur coats showed that labeling primarily plays into the hands of the consumer, who thus receives detailed information about the product. I also want to note that if, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, the withdrawal of “gray” fur from the shade can bring up to 14 billion rubles annually to the budget. in the form of tax deductions, then when the footwear market is whitewashed, the amount of tax fees may be many times higher. The introduction of online cash desks and the labeling of shoes are important steps that will help clear the market of fragmented companies and ineffective businessmen. ”
“Labeling shoes is absolutely the right decision. This will reduce unfair competition, which is now present in the domestic footwear market. The market will become transparent. Now in the industry there is a huge number of small retailers who, due to the use of "gray" schemes, have the opportunity to significantly save on the cost of goods. It is extremely difficult to compete with them for large enterprises, both manufacturers and retailers that operate in white. Chipping will lead to the fact that companies will be forced to either come out of the "shadow" or leave the market, thus, the competitive environment will become healthier, both the state and business will benefit from this. "
“The National Shoe Union has always worked on the problem of legalizing the shoe market in Russia. In 2006, with our efforts we were able to reduce customs duties on the import of imported shoes into the country, thanks to this, the volume of legal import of leather shoes over the year increased tenfold. Now, with the country's entry into the WTO, the instrument of tariff regulation has been exhausted. Labeling shoes can be another measure that will help whitewash the industry. At least, the experience with RFID tagging of fur products in this regard turned out to be positive.
Some participants in the Russian footwear market are wary of this initiative, citing as an example the organization of shoe labeling in Belarus. But this comparison is not entirely correct. Since in the Republic of Belarus the marking of shoes is in the nature of an excise tax, that is, it pursues the goal of collecting funds from market participants. The currently proposed labeling for the EAEU countries does not set such a goal, all this is done to counteract illegal trade in both imports and footwear produced domestically, and create conditions for fair competition for business. I do not even exclude that the label itself, which will most likely be implemented as a two-dimensional barcode, will be free, that is, it will not require any additional costs from manufacturers and importers.
Of course, the volume of the footwear market in Russia significantly exceeds the volume of the fur market, and certain organizational difficulties can be foreseen. But before the labeling process starts, all the features of the shoe business will be taken into account. I think that the implementation of the project will start no earlier than 2018. I urge all participants in the footwear market to follow the information on this topic, which will be posted on the website of the National Footwear Union, and we also undertake to inform footwear producers through the media, to organize specialized conferences.
It is more expedient to replace chipping with a special marking with barcodes, said Andrei Kapusta, marketing director of Yegoryevsk-Obuv OAO (Kotofey TM). He spoke in detail about the real reasons that hinder the simple transfer of the experience of chipping fur products to the shoe market. Among them, the expert cites, in particular, the increase in the retail cost of products, as well as the problems that retailers may encounter due to the return of chip shoes to consumers. After all, no one has canceled the return of goods, each buyer has this right, and the seller must satisfy it and accept shoes that are not comfortable for one reason or another. But in the case of chip shoes, retailers will have additional problems: shoes cannot be put on sale until a new chip is applied.
This initiative of state authorities pursues a good goal - the legalization of the footwear market in Russia. Moreover, positive experience has already been gained from the application of this technology in the fur industry. However, a simple transfer of chipping to the shoe market, in our opinion, is not advisable for the following reasons:
1. Two orders of magnitude. In the fur industry, about 8 million tags (= 8 million products) were put into circulation during the season since the introduction, sales in the shoe market are estimated at 400-600 million pairs per year, and inventory at all levels of the distribution network in 300-400 million pairs . In addition, about 200 million pairs are currently in production and supply. Correspondingly, the simultaneous introduction of steps will require the release of about 700 million steps. The production of steps and the provision of their application to products not only by manufacturers, but also in warehouses and in retail outlets, will generally lead to enormous costs. In addition, it is now difficult to assess how well the infrastructure that successfully processed 8 million steps will also successfully process 700 million ...
2. The rise in the cost of production. For the fur industry, the cost of the steps was 20-25 rubles, which at the retail price of a fur product from 20 thousand rubles is only 0,1% or less in the price of the final product. For shoes, and especially for children, these 20-25 rubles, excluding the cost of attaching the chip itself, can make 10-15% of the cost of the final product (we are talking about the low-price segment, about cheap models - Czechs, slippers, etc.).
3. Return problems. After the sale of products, the chip must be repaid within 3 days. As a general rule, the customer has 14 days for return, the actual standard for the market is 1 month from the date of purchase or the beginning of the season. Accordingly, when a buyer returns an unworn shoe after a chip has been extinguished, this shoe cannot be put on sale until a new chip is applied, and based on the fact that only manufacturers / suppliers who import shoes into the territory of the Russian Federation will have the right to receive steps, the process receiving a new chip through the entire distribution network may be delayed. At the same time, do not forget that the high trading season in the shoe market depends on the weather and is often very tight - two consecutive weekends can account for up to 50% of sales per month, and temporarily dropping a returned pair of shoes from the assortment can create a “hole” in the size range in the season and forced discounts for further sale.
4. The chip administration system itself is not completely clear. Is it enough to fix the chip for a certain pair of shoes to consider this pair legal, or will it also require the transfer to the registrar of complete information about all stages of the goods distribution of this pair and the chip, which is fraught with additional errors and malfunctions.
5. The cost of specialized equipment for reading steps and the availability of the Internet. This equipment will need to be available at every sales outlet, and if for large stores and chains the costs are not significant, then for a small village store this may turn out to be an unbearable burden. It is no secret that until now not all stores accept cards for payment, and not only because of the price of equipment, but also because of the lack of a stable network.
From our point of view, it makes sense to replace chipping with special labeling with bar codes, using the experience of the Republic of Belarus and regulation of the alcohol market. On the one hand, the cost of this marking should be significantly lower than that of the chip, and on the other, a sufficiently large number of stores already have barcode scanners, which will save on deployment of infrastructure and not transfer these costs to consumers whose purchasing power, as already mentioned, leaves much to be desired.
In addition, in our country, a much similar project is already being implemented - we are talking about the amended 54-ФЗ and online cash desks, which in the future should also transmit information about the product to the Registrar during the sale. The problem is that these projects have different administrative bodies of state power: the Federal Tax Service of the Russian Federation implements 54-FZ on online cash registers, and the idea of shoe chipping is being promoted by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia. Moreover, by objectives (legalization of cash turnover and legalization of sales of certain types of goods) - they are similar. From a technical point of view, building these projects on a single cash infrastructure would help to avoid additional costs. We hope that when developing a project to legalize the shoe market, the above circumstances will be taken into account.
The chipping procedure should be started with leather shoes, Vladimir Denisenko, General Director of Unichel Shoe Company, Vice President of the Russian Union of Leatherworkers and Shoemakers (RSKO), is sure. The expert believes that chipping is a very real and necessary procedure for the Russian footwear market. A small increase in the price of shoes for the final consumer, which will cause the implementation of the innovation, is "a reasonable price for the reliability of information about the manufacturer and the materials."
Experience has shown that chipping shoes is a very real procedure: they made fur coats, made alcohol, got to drugs, which, by the way, for the most part, are cheaper than a pair of shoes. But here, chipping turned out to be a feasible measure. And whatever industry you touch, it allows you to “whitewash” the market. If we talk about medicines, it turned out that more than 30% of the market is fakes. The same situation is with fur coats: it turned out that almost 90% of the market was in the “shadow”. In the shoe industry, the situation is no better: 30% is a legal product, and 50% is a product with an unknown history of origin, information about which is unreliable. It can be anything: synthetics, which give out for the leather, or Chinese manufacturers who impersonate the factories near Moscow, which in nature do not exist. And there is much more that no one will ever know about, but all this misleads the buyer, as they try to sell him low-quality consumer goods.
I think that it’s worth starting with the position of “leather shoes”. I don’t think it makes sense to glue excise duty on indoor slippers, as well as on molded textile shoes, at least for now, and then - life will show. But to separate leather shoes from fakes is very important. In Dagestan, in Rostov-on-Don, a large quantity of goods is illegally produced now, which is generally not considered anywhere. These enterprises represent serious competition for us, not at the expense of quality, but at the expense of price: we pay VAT, but they do not pay; we pay taxes, but they do not pay; we pay a white salary, and they pay a gray one. Of course, due to such schemes, they get the price of low shoes at 1000 rubles cheaper, which is very noticeable in our price segment. If we pay taxes today, why shouldn't someone pay them? For small businesses, the amounts will not be that big.
The main thing that has still stopped is fears that the price for the end consumer will rise, because in any case these costs will fall on his shoulders. But now it’s clear that the price of the chip fits in 8-10 rubles per pair, and this is a slight increase. I believe that this is a reasonable price for the reliability of information about the manufacturer, the materials and the opportunity to find out where these shoes are actually produced. After all, Italian brands today simply cry from the fact that a huge amount of shoes actually produced in China are sold under their brands. And the buyer gives for such boots on 13 - 15, or even 20 thousand rubles, and believes that this is actually Italy! Therefore, I think that the consumer will also take this initiative positively. I believe that chipping can and should be done, but first - to define and build the rules of the game, and then, it is quite possible that we will get a positive result.
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