KATHMANDU: The quality upgradation efforts of the government and entrepreneurs appear to have paid off as export of Nepali pashmina has started to pick up.
The export of pashmina shawls increased by 29.4 per cent to Rs. 2.82 billion during the last fiscal year 2013/14.
The export of pashmina had dropped by 90 per cent and reached below Rs. one billion from Rs. 10 billion yearly over a decade.
However, the export of pashmina started to increase from the last three years after the continued efforts of the pashmina entrepreneurs for improving its quality, branding and marketing among others of Nepal’s renowned pashmina product in the international market.
Nepal exported pashmina worth Rs. 2.17 billion and Rs. 1.90 billion in the fiscal year 2012/13 and 2011/12 respectively.
Pushpa Man Shrestha, president of Nepal Pashmina Industries Association (NPIA), said that the registration of ‘Chyangra Pashmina’ trademark in the international market and cash incentive provided by the government to the exporters contributed to pick up pashmina export in the last two or three years.
With the view to encourage investors to invest in export-oriented industries, the government has been providing two per cent cash incentives to pashmina industries exporting their products abroad for the last two years.
“We are still effortful to improve quality and design of pashmina and promote trademark which help enhance competitiveness of our products in the international market,” Shrestha said.
He said that it is necessary to focus on marketing and promotion in the international market for export boost of Nepali pashmina which had dropped in the past due to lack of promotion as well as the entry of the Chinese and Indian pashmina.
“The export of pashmina would revive and reach in earlier climax point if the government increased cash incentives to the entrepreneurs in line with the China and Indian governments and allocate funds for the promotion of its trademark in the international market,” Shrestha said.
With joint efforts of the government and the NPIA, Chyangra trademark has been registered in 41 countries, including 27 in the European Union.
The trade market registered countries are US, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Norway, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Thailand, Taiwan, Russia and Brazil.
The association is moving to register the collective trademark in other four countries including China, India, United Arab Emirates and South Africa, he informed.
Talking about the potential of Chyangra farming in homegrown, he urged the government to invest for Chyangra farming in the northern belt which would enhance the livelihood of people as well as reduce dependency on import of raw material.
“If we succeeded to produce raw materials inside the country as per our demand, our product will be cheaper and competitive in the international market,” he said.
Shrestha said that the pashmina export would play a crucial role in minimising the country’s widening foreign trade deficit and create jobs opportunities in large scale in the country.
He said that the number of factories and employment declined significantly over the decades due to decline the export of pashmina.
Around 100 factories are in operation and only 20,000 people are getting jobs in these factories against more than more than 100,000 people worked in over 1,000 factories in 2000s.
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