India to train African craftswomen in basketry

January 10th, 2012 - 7:48 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 10 (IANS) India’s National Institute of Design (NID) will train craftswomen of rural Africa in basket weaving under a $1-million project.

The government Tuesday said the programme will cover five African countries over a period of three years. It will be launched in Zimbabwe next month.

The project is part of the India-Africa Forum Summit Action Plan that was adopted at the second India-Africa Summit held in Addis Ababa in May 2011.

The project is aimed at empowering women through skill enhancement and appropriate marketing through leading Indian brands like FabIndia.

A team from NID will visit Zimbabwe for identification of 25 craftswomen who would be trained in India in collaboration with New Basket Workshop Foundation, an African NGO.

“This collaboration between the ancient civilizations with rich tradition in craft skills will further strengthen the bonds between India and Africa,” said Commerce and Industries Minister Anand Sharma, announcing the project.

Sharma, who met his Zimbabwean counterpart Welshman Ncube in Harare Monday, assured that India would assist Zimbabwe in reviving its textile sector. India would provide skill training and help in developing textile clusters in that country.

The two ministers stressed the need for enhancing and diversifying trade between the two countries which currently stood at $128 million. Both agreed to convene a meeting of the Joint Trade Committee in the next six months.

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