Last year, exports of Russian leather footwear declined by 30 per cent compared with 1999, and the first quarter of 2001 showed a similar trend. Meanwhile, imports of leather footwear are increasing. In the January-May period, 4.2 million pairs of leather shoes worth US$52.5 million were imported - virtually double that of the same period last year (2.3 million pairs valued at US$24.4 million).