Financial Tribune- The city of Tabriz in East Azarbaijan Province accounts for 35% of Iran’s hand-woven carpet production, the chairman of Tabriz Handmade Carpet Producers Association said.
Esmaeil Chamani added that East Azarbaijan Province has a share of more than 35% in Iran’s handmade carpet exports, Financial Tribune’s sister publication Donya-e-Eqtesad reported.
Tabriz is the capital of the northwestern Iranian province of East Azarbaijan.
“The carpet industry in East Azarbaijan has created 500,000 jobs,” Chamani said, adding that there is potential for a further 200,000.
Other major Iranian cities where handmade carpets are woven, apart from Tabriz, include Isfahan, Qom, Kashan, Mashhad and Kerman.
According to Chairman of Iran National Carpet Center Hamid Kargar, more than 3 million square meters of handmade carpets are annually woven in Iran, two-thirds of which are exported and the rest meets domestic demand.
Trade Promotion Organization of Iran’s latest statistics show the country exported $312 million worth of hand-woven carpets in the nine months to Dec. 21, registering a 26% increase compared with last year’s corresponding period.
Persian hand-woven carpets are exported to 80 countries.
According to Kargar, last year’s total exports stood at $359 million.
With about $90 million worth of purchases, the US was last year’s top importer of Persian carpets.
Exports to the US have gained momentum after five to six years of “zero” exports to the country, due to the ban imposed on the import of Iranian carpets in September 2010.
“We are looking to add new markets, including China, South Africa as well as Chile and Brazil in South America, to the existing ones. The Chinese market is very significant for us, as the country was one of our biggest rivals and now is among our top 20 customers of the product,” the official said last month.
“Iran is the biggest exporter of hand-woven carpets with a 30% share in global markets,” he told Financial Tribune at the 26th Iran Handmade Carpet Exhibition held in Tehran’s International Fairground in August.
An exhibition of hand-woven carpets and rug tableaux made by artists and carpet weavers in Iran’s Khorasan Razavi Province is concluding today at Kui Yuan Art Gallery in the port city of Guangzhou northwest of Hong Kong, IRNA reported.
China is a major importer of Iranian carpet tableaux, followed by the US and European countries.
The city of Sardroud in southwest Tabriz, East Azarbaijan Province, is considered the global hub of carpet tableaux production.
According to Azem Sehhati, the head of Sardroud Carpet Tableaux Producers Union, more than 80% of Iran’s carpet tableaux are hand-woven in Sardroud.
Some 450 carpet tableaux are produced in the city daily and the unemployment rate there is next to zero, as almost all locals are involved in carpet tableaux production.