Tourism ministry to support women-headed households 

July 8, 2020 - 18:29

TEHRAN – The Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts plans to support women-headed households who are active in the field of handicrafts through giving them grants, deputy minister Pouya Mahmoudian said on Tuesday.

Due to the coronavirus crisis, crafters have faced several problems, and supporting them, especially breadwinner women, is on the ministry’s agenda, the official added, CHTN reported.

In Iran, there are 3 million women-headed households, out of a total of 22 million families, and most of them can be found in less developed areas of the country.

She also mentioned that if the National Headquarters for Combating Coronavirus gives permission, the ministry is ready to organize this year’s edition of the National Crafts Exhibition, which is held annually at Tehran Permanent International Fairground.

Crafters and artisans from every corner of Iran can promote skills in the exhibit, which features arrays of personal ornamentation, woodwork, illuminated manuscript, miniature, textile printing, enamel, leatherwork, handwoven textile, calligraphy, traditional musical instrument, metalwork, and marquetry to name a few.

Mahmoudian also said that Iran exported $527 million worth of handicrafts during the past calendar year 1398 (ended March 19). 
Of the figure, some $273 million worth of handicrafts were exported officially through customs, and $254 million was earned via suitcase trade (allowed for customs-free and tax-free transfer) through various provinces, she added.

Back in May, Mahmoudian noted that due to the outbreak of coronavirus, suitcase exports of handicrafts were completely stopped since the month of Esfand (the last month of the year), and official exports of handicrafts experienced a steep decline.

Talking on the significance of handicrafts in the country, she noted, “Iran globally ranks first in terms of having the topmost number of world cities [and villages] of handicrafts.”

“Some 295 fields of handicrafts are currently practiced across Iran with more than two million people engaging, majority of whom are women… Handicrafts also play an important role in the economy in our rural villages,” she said.

Iran’s handicrafts exports reached $289 million in the year 1397, showing three percent growth year on year, based on data released by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts. Traditional ceramics, pottery vessels, handwoven cloths as well as personal ornamentations with precious and semi-precious gemstones were exported to Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, the U.S., the UK, and other countries.


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