Poor technology and designs kill Bangladesh’s jute carpets

July 11, 2007 | By admin | Reply More

Once famous for its jute carpets, Bangladesh has not only lost the world market to countries like Spain and Turkey but domestic consumers too, thanks to obsolete technology, outdated designs and bad marketing.
Bangladesh continues to grow the finest quality of raw jute, but carpet exports during the first half of 2006-07 were a mere $1.6 million. Its presence in the $95 billion global floor-covering market is ‘microscopic’, New Age said Tuesday.
Bengal Carpet Ltd, the lone surviving major carpet factory, makes fewer and smaller carpets. Designs too are ‘below global standards’.
‘Local carpet manufacturers have been out of operation from the mid-’90s though the demand for carpets made of natural fibres has been growing by leaps and bounds in the global market,’ said Shahedul Islam Helal, director of Bengal Carpet.
Imported synthetic carpets have grabbed Bangladeshi markets because of better designs and competitive prices. The government’s decision to lower duties on imported carpets has also hurt the domestic producer.
Industry insiders admit that Bangladesh stands nowhere in the global market because of the lack of modern technology required for weaving and dyeing world-standard carpets. The designs of the carpets are also way below global standards.
Technology remains poor because modern looms used by carpet weaving units are very expensive, says Shabbir Yusuf, chairperson of the Bangladesh Jute Spinners Association.
But industry leaders say there is hope as Bangladesh still has the advantage of cheap trained labour and can recover the market.

Author: Staff Writer © IANS
Source: http://www.indiaenews.com/bangladesh/20070710/59998.htm

Category: Knowledge for Development, South Asia

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