Easier credit access, promotion key to boost handicrafts: President

By: | Published: December 10, 2015 12:07 AM

Concerted efforts, including easier access to credit and promotion in domestic as well as foreign markets, are required to boost the handicrafts sector...

Concerted efforts, including easier access to credit and promotion in domestic as well as foreign markets, are required to boost the handicrafts sector, which has recorded encouraging performances in exports in recent years, President Pranab Mukherjee said on Wednesday.

Defying a global slowdown, handicraft exports — including handmade carpets — rose 18.2% to R36,189 crore in 2014-15 from a year before, the President said. The country’s overall exports, however, dropped marginally in the rupee term and 1.2% in the dollar term in 2014-15 from the previous fiscal.

“Universities, corporate houses and government departments can contribute by sponsoring and also undertaking research, which results in new and innovative technologies that will enable upgradation of the traditional tools and designs of local artisans. The plan to set up a Hastkala Academy is a welcome step in this direction,” Mukherjee said at the Shilp Guru and National Awards function here, organised to felicitate artisans.

Twenty-one Shilp Guru awards and 59 national awards were given away to craftspersons, covering three years through 2014. The awardees included 16 women.

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