Iran offers condolences on death of top WCC official Ghada Hijjawi

April 3, 2021 - 18:32

TEHRAN – Iranian tourism minister Ali-Asghar Mounesan offered condolences on Friday on the death of the World Crafts Council-Asia Pacific Region (WCC-APR) President Ghada Hijjawi, who died of COVID-19, praising her deep acquaintance with Persian handicrafts.

“Hijjawi was well aware of the unique potential of Iranian handicrafts,” Mounesan said. Her seriousness in developing, promoting, and supporting human artifacts was admirable, the minister added.

The late Hijjawi always had an effective relationship with the member states of the World Crafts Council, and in the meantime, with her deep knowledge of the unique capacities of Iranian handicrafts, she had a constructive interaction with (Iran’s) Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts, Mounesan said.

“During her tenure, she took firm steps towards achieving the goals of the World Crafts Council, with a special focus on the original arts and crafts of the peoples of the planet.”

Our country is ranked first in the number of global registrations of cities and villages of handicrafts, he added.

With 14 entries, Iran ranks first globally for the number of cities and villages registered by the World Crafts Council, as China with seven entries, Chile with four, and India with three ones come next.

In January 2020, the cities of Shiraz, Malayer, and Zanjan and the village of Qassemabad were designated by the WCC- Asia Pacific Region, putting Iran’s number of world crafts cities and villages from ten to 14.

Iran exported $523 million worth of handicrafts during the past calendar year 1398 (ended March 19, 2020). Of the figure, some $273 million worth of handicrafts were exported officially through customs, and about $250 million was earned via suitcase trade (allowed for customs-free and tax-free transfer) through various provinces, according to data provided by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts.

Ceramics, pottery vessels, handwoven cloths as well as personal ornamentations with precious and semi-precious gemstones are traditionally exported to Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, the U.S., the UK, and other countries.

Over the past couple of years, dozens of high-quality Iranian handicrafts have been honored with the UNESCO Seal of Excellence.

AFM/

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