Inmates to be offered handicrafts courses 

August 7, 2021 - 18:48

TEHRAN – Prisons across the western province of Ilam are scheduled to hold handicraft courses for the inmates, the provincial tourism chief has announced. 

The courses will be held under a memorandum of understanding recently signed between the province’s Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Department and the Prisons, Security, and Corrective Measures Organization, Abdolmalek Shanbezadeh said on Saturday. 

By taking part in the courses, inmates can become job-ready upon their release, the official added. 

The MOU also aims at holding handicrafts exhibitions to promote the prisoners’ handmade products and create a market for them to generate income, he noted. 

Tourism ministry helps empower inmates

In October 2020, the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts signed a memorandum of understanding with the Prisons, Security, and Corrective Measures Organization to create jobs and make income for prisoners.

The MOU also aimed at implementing special educational and promotional programs, identifying talented prisoners, and improving their social status.

The deputy tourism minister Pouya Mahmoudian said that handicraft products made by prisoners have been displayed in various exhibitions, and the income generated from selling these products has been returned to the prisoners and their families.

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.

The value of Iran’s handicrafts exports stood at $120 million during the first eleven months of the past Iranian calendar year 1399 (March 20, 2020 – February 18, 2021), Mehr reported. The country’s handicrafts exports slumped during the mentioned months in comparison to the same period last a year earlier due to the damage the coronavirus pandemic has inflicted on global trade.

The Islamic Republic exported $427 million worth of handicrafts during the first eleven months of the calendar year 1398. Of the figure, some $190 million was earned via suitcase trade (allowed for customs-free and tax-free transfer) through 20 provinces, according to data compiled 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.



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