Handmade carpets in India may get a government trademark and set standards, a move that would increase their quality and effective production. India is one of the largest exporters of handmade carpet products in the world, with a 40% share of the world’s handmade rug and carpet exports at about USD 1.35 billion, and the government hopes that this will further strengthen their leading position.
India’s top spot is followed by Iran, which accounts for 20%-25% of total exports; China, which accounts for roughly 20%; and Nepal, which accounts for 10%. Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Turkey are also key players in the global market. Though imports are increasing to countries like China and Brazil, the top importers of handmade Indian rugs and carpets are Europe (especially Germany, which accounts for 40% of all carpet imports) and America.
Putting a trademark and standards in place would increase overall market and product quality by forcing manufacturers to adhere to government-mandated quality benchmarks in order to sell and export their products in the Indian market. The ministry also intends to create training standards so that weavers can meet certification norms and help combat the growing popularity of machine-made rugs. These standards would help to regulate turnover, employment, and compliance with effluent treatment norms, and will reportedly take two to three years to create and implement. India’s textile ministry is also reportedly working to create a distinctive brand of sorts for Indian handmade rugs and carpets that will signify quality and reliability. Similar to Australia’s Woolmark, the government trademark could be licensed for use by affiliated vendors on their products.
The market for Indian rugs and handmade carpets also recently got a boost and generated new business from the 33rd Indian Carpet Expo, held in March of this year. The Carpet Expo is one of the largest handmade carpet fairs in Asia, and allows weavers, suppliers, and manufacturers to display their wares and their products’ cultural heritage to buyers from around the world. More than 400 carpet importers from 55 countries—including Canada, China, Chile, Brazil, Australia, and the US—were present at the fair.
Shipments of Indian carpets are currently growing at a rate of 10% every year, showing that the market is already on the road to a fairly promising future. A government trademark could take the market to new heights, bring in customers from as of yet untapped regions and markets, and could reduce the threat of competition from Chinese machine-made rugs.
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