Baku, Azerbaijan, August 3
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
A group of the US hand-made carpet experts is scheduled to visit Iran in September.
The head of the Iran National Carpet Center, Hamid Kargar confirmed that the center has invited the experts and aims to promote the country's carpet export, Iran's Mehr news agency reported on August 3.
Kargar expressed hope that the US experts' visit will increase pressure on the United States' government on lifting sanctions against Iran's carpet.
He went on to add that another group of the US experts also will visit Iran in the next months.
The official also confirmed that Iran has lost over 25 percent of its hand-made carpet markets due to sanctions.
However he remarked the administration's détente policy is positively affecting the country's carpet exports.
Kargar expressed hope that the country's hand-made carpet industry will overcome the recent year's slump.
Iran has exported over $57 million worth of hand-made carpets in the first quarter of the current Iranian fiscal year (March 21 - June 20), which indicates an increase by 23 percent compared to the same period of preceding year.
The figure stood at $314 million in the last Iranian fiscal year (ended on March 20) which was the lowest value in recent years.
The hand-made carpet exports during the last fiscal year declined by 26.35 percent, compared to the preceding year, according to the Iranian Custom Administration's annual report.
The country exported its hand-made carpets to some 80 countries during the last year. Germany, UAE, Japan, Lebanon, Italy, the UK, Pakistan, Qatar, Switzerland and Sweden topped the list of the countries which imported Iran's carpets in the mentioned period.
Iran also exported some $51,000 worth of hand-made carpets to the USA.
The country produces about 5 million square meters of carpets annually of which 80 percent are sold in international markets.