Tehran, Tunis eager to expand cultural ties

February 18, 2022 - 21:23

TEHRAN – Iran’s deputy minister of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Pouya Mahmoudian on Wednesday met with Tunisia's Ambassador to Tehran Samir Al-Mansar to discuss ways to expand ties in areas of cultural heritage and ancient arts.

“Cooperation in the field of arts and handicrafts will lead to the deepening, strengthening, and consolidation of relations between Iran and Tunisia,” Mahmoudian said.

The Tunisian envoy praised Iran's “successful” performance in the field of commercialization of handicrafts and emphasized strengthening cooperation and establishing trade channels between the two nations.

Also, Mahmoudian proposed working out a memorandum of understanding to be inked by ministers of the two countries, which was welcomed by the Tunisian ambassador.

“We are interested in using Iran's experience in the field of commercialization and exchanging information in the field of Handicrafts,” Al-Mansar stated.

“We welcome your proposal to formulate a memorandum of understanding, and we are ready for that.” 

Moreover, the officials exchanged views on how to hold joint exhibitions and exchange experts.

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.

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.

AFM

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