Export of Nepali handicraft products grew by 13 percent in the last fiscal year.
The growth in exports was fueled mainly by higher demand for metal crafts, cotton goods, felt products, glass products and woolen goods from the international market, according to the Federation of Handicraft Associations of Nepal (FHAN).
According to the federation, Nepal exported Rs 5.4 billion worth of handicraft products in the last fiscal year, ending July 15. In the previous fiscal year, the country had exported handicraft products worth only Rs 4.8 billion.
There is high demand for Nepali in the United States, Europe and the Asia Pacific countries, officials of the federation said.
Felt products was Nepal’s largest handicraft exports in the review year. Export of felt products fetched the country Rs1.5 billion in 2016/17, up 38 percent compared to in 2015/16, followed by metal crafts (Rs 1.4 billion). Export of metal crafts grew by 10 percent in the last fiscal year compared to 2015/16, followed by woolen products (6 percent), and glass products (169 percent).
Export of glass products surged by 169 percent to Rs319.7 million in 2016/17 thanks mainly to huge demand for Nepali glass-made hookah.
However, exports of paper and pashmina products fell by 8 percent and 26 percent, respectively, to Rs429 million and Rs217 million in 2016/17.
The government is offering cash incentive equivalent to 2 percent of the value of exported goods having value addition of at least 30 percent. It is currently mulling over raising the incentive to 4 percent based on suggestions of the exporters.