Indian handicrafts need to be more innovative: Minister

February 25th, 2009 - 7:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Greater Noida, Feb 25 (IANS) Indian handicrafts will have to be more innovative to boost exports at a time when demand is falling in western markets due to the economic slowdown, Minister of State for Textiles E.V.K.S. Elangovan said here Wednesday.
“We need to develop new, innovative items to compete in the international market besides upgrading design and technology to boost handicraft exports,” Elangovan said at the inauguration of the four-day Indian Handicrafts and Gifts Fair.

The fair is being held at a time when Indian exports have fallen 40 percent this fiscal.

In the previous fairs, most of the buyers had come from the US and Europe. With the number of buyers from that part of the world expected to fall this time, the organisers have made special efforts to bring buyers from Latin America this year.

As a special invitee, Colombian beauty queen Miss Colombia Universe 2008, Taliana Vargas, will attend the event.

“The fair is spread over 97,000-square-metre exhibition area, featuring products of 1,500 exhibitors and home furnishing textiles and handicrafts is expected to generate sizeable enquiries and business orders for the Indian handicraft sector,” Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts executive director Rakesh Kumar said.

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