Handicrafts promotion on the anvil

KATHMANDU: Federation of Handicraft Association of Nepal (FHAN) has planned a number of promotional schemes this year for the handicraft products. From development of Handicraft Design Centre, to handicraft village at Chobar, handicraft exhibition centre and establishment of cadmium testing laboratory, FHAN is leaving no stone unturned for the handicraft products promotion and employment generation.

Nepali handicraft products is one of the most exportable product that has been supporting nation's economy, Bikash Ratna Dhakwa, president of FHAN said informing about the various promotional programmes of the federation.

The association is also lobbying hard for the development of handicraft sector. According to Dhakwa, during a meet with Minister for Industry today, they tried to convince him. "The minister was quite positive on coordinating with the private sector," he said adding that FHAN for the development of the Handicraft Design Centre has urged the government to grant an operating cost of Rs 1.5 million. The government has earlier granted an establishment cost of Rs 2 million.

The design centre will be operated on a public private partnership (PP) concept. Dhakwa also said that government has agreed to establish a cadmium-testing laboratory in PPP model and 'within this week the proposal will be forwarded.'

Talking about the development of Handicraft village at Chobar (earstwhile Himal Cement company), he said that the locals there are now aware of the benefits they can get along with the development of handicraft village. "It will generate direct employment to 5,000 and indirectly employment to 10,000 locals," he added.

FHAN is also planning to establish a Handicraft Exhibition Showroom at Thamel targeting the Small and Micro Enterprises (SMEs) of Handcraft sector from 14 districts. According to him, the showroom will be a great opportunity for the SMEs at they lack proper place for the promotion of their products. "Through this showroom SMEs from all the 14 districts will be able to make direct communication with the buyers here in the valley and at the mean time promote their personal business too," said Dhakwa.

He further added that the space in the showroom will be granted for a time period of one month in a rotation basis. "The showroom will be provided to 25 to 50 entrepreneurs in an economy rate," he said adding that it will certainly bridge the trade gap and help increase export too.

"We are developing its modality," said the president of FHAN that along with Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry is also going to organise one-country shows in five different countries in Europe. "We are also planning to organise one-country show at five different cities of Europe," he informed.