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In Kandahar, carpet industry on the upswing

In Kandahar, carpet industry on the upswing

Mar 06, 2019 - 14:56

KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): The carpet industry has recently made ample headway in southern Kandahar province, where dozens of families are engaged in weaving rugs that have special global fame.

Earlier, the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (DRRD) had distributed carpet-weaving equipment to hundreds of families returning from neighbouring Pakistaninfo-icon and Iran.

Qamar Gul, 45, a resident of the Mir Bazaar area of Kandahar City, is weaving carpets along with her two daughters. She returned to Kandahar a year ago from Pakistan, where she spent 25 years.

They had been weaving carpets in Pakistan as well, she recalled. With the support of two daughters, she has been making carpets from dawn to dusk since the MRRD provided her the required tools.

Qamar Gul explains the carpet industry in the province was not in good shape previously, but dozens of families, womeninfo-icon and men, are currently eking out a living by weaving carpets.

Receiving 20,000 afghanis monthly, she is happy with her job. She could easily meet financial expenses and other family needs, the woman adds.

Maryam, a returnee from Iran who is living in a rented house, pays the house rent and meets family needs by knitting rugs.

She is also pleased with her work but wants her products to be exported abroad. Maryam also urges the authorities concerned to help sell carpets locally.

Gul Mohammad, who has set up a carpet-weaving network inside his residence with support from the Rural Development Department, enjoys life after starting the business.

He also demands markets for carpets at home and abroad to lift poor women out of poverty by offering them gainful work in the industry. Officials from the department concerned visit his unit every week.

Apart from women, men who were formerly drug addicts are also involved in making rugs after rehabilitation. Gul Mohammad, one of them, says he had sought shelter in drugs due to unemployment and poverty.

Ingila Wolesyar, a Rural Rehabilitation and Development Department official, acknowledges significant progress has been made by the carpet industry in Kandahar.

She says MRRD has distributed carpet-weaving tools and equipment to 250 families to boost the rural economy. As many as 1,950 individuals have been provided with job opportunities.

About 280 metres of carpet was woven last year in Kandahar and the process continues, she adds.

Mohammad Naseem Ayubi, rural rehabilitation and development director, says they are trying to develop the industry and promote the rural economy. Hundreds of women and men are making carpets in their homes.

One metre of hand-woven carpet costs up to $150 in the country and $250 in international markets.


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