The centre is developing standards and a trademark to reinforce India’s position as the top source of handmade carpets and ensure that products comply with quality benchmarks. It is for creating a brand for Indian handmade carpets along the lines of Australia’s Woolmark, which is a guarantee of the highest quality of wool.
“We are working on a brand… a trademark that will ensure that the products comply with the standards set by the organisation,” chairman, Carpet Export Promotion Council, Mahavir Pratap Sharma said.
The idea is also to use existing geographic indications on handmade carpets from Kashmir, Mirzapur, Bhadohi and Banaras (Varanasi) and showcase them across the world using the planned mark of quality. The council also plans to set training standards so that weavers can meet certification norms. Sharma said competition from machine-made carpets is increasing. However, India has less than one per cent share of global machine-made rugs.
“We will take two or three years to create parameters on turnover, employment and compliance with effluent treatment norms,” Sharma said. India has a 40 per cent share of world’s handmade rug exports at around Rs. 9,000 crore. Shipments are growing almost 10 per cent annually. Iran, China, India and Nepal are the key players in the global carpet trade. Iran accounts for about 20-25 per cent of total exports, China for about 20 per cent and Nepal for a nearly 10 per cent.
Other significant exporters include Turkey, Afghanistan and Pakistan. China’s carpets are largely machine-made. Europe and America are the chief importers, accounting for almost 95 per cent of total carpet imports. In EU, Germany dominates with a 40 per cent share of all carpet imports. Consumers in Russia, China, Brazil and Chile are expanding rapidly.
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