Fars home to 200,000 crafters, provincial data suggests

June 26, 2022 - 20:0

TEHRAN-  Some 200,000 artisans are currently employed in the handicraft sector of the southern Fars province, the deputy provincial tourism chief has said. 

A total of 900 jobs are also being created in this sector annually, Majid Salimi explained on Sunday. 

“However, in the realm of handicrafts, the biggest challenge is the large size of the province and the diversity of disciplines as well as the lack of specialized personnel,” the official added. 

“There is 80 percent of artisans working independently, who are unable to turn their business into revenue, and there are major craftspeople who work in the villages far from the handicrafts centers,” he explained.  

The ancient region of Fars, also spelled Pars or Persis, was the heart of the Achaemenian Empire (c. 550–330 BC), which was founded by Cyrus the Great and had its capital at Pasargadae. Darius I the Great moved the capital to nearby Persepolis in the late 6th or early 5th century BC.

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. For instance, Shiraz is named a “world city of [diverse] handicrafts”, Malayer is a global hub for woodcarving and carved-wood furniture, while Zanjan has gained the title of a “world city of filigree”.

Available data compiled by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts suggests 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.


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