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Ha Noi encourages traditional handicraft village development (February 28, 2005)

Ha Thi Vinh was honoured last year for her contribution to developing pottery in Bat Trang Village in the capital city’s outlying district of Gia Lam. — VNA/VNS Phuong Thao.
HA NOI — As part of their 2005-10 strategy, Ha Noi city authorities have decided to develop handicraft villages to promote traditional handicrafts and increase revenue.

Deputy secretary of the city Party Committee, Phung Huu Phu, said the city would set up handicraft villages and establish streets for artisans and handicrafts in urban areas for tourism.

Each village is expected to attract 8,000 to 10,000 labourers annually, double the current figure, and revenue from handicrafts is to go up, accounting for 70 per cent of the non-State revenue.

To reach the goals, the city will develop new handicraft villages, preserve and rehabilitate traditional handicraft villages, traditional products, and encourage villages to adopt advanced technologies to improve the quality of products.

According to the deputy secretary, the city will set up zones for handicraft villages and communes in the outlying Tu Liem District and Dan Phuong District of Ha Tay Province.

"We expect the area to lure skilled handicraftsmen not only from the north, but across the country, to include all traditional handicrafts of Viet Nam," he said.

The city will encourage foreign and domestic enterprises to invest in developing handicraft villages, he said. Also according to the 2005-10 strategy, the city will give priority to villages focusing on ceramics, garments and weaving, carpentry, and leather, as they are capable of increasing revenues rapidly and have a wider market for their goods.

The city’s Department of Planning and Investment said the city needs VND500 billion to invest in developing these handicraft zones. By 2006, five zones will become operational in Bat Trang in Gia Lam, Lien Ha, Van Ha in Dong Anh, Tan Trieu in Thanh Tri and Xuan Phuong in Tu Liem.

According to a report of the city’s Party Committee, there are 83 handicraft villages located in 44 communes across the city. Of the 6,600 production workshops in villages, 98 per cent are owned by families, and 68 per cent of them have only a working capital of under VND50 million each.

Most of these villages lack modern equipment and have limited markets. For instance, Bat Trang and Van Ha handicraft villages export only 15 per cent of their products. Ha Noi alone accounts for 45 per cent of the consumption while the rest of the country makes up 40 per cent.

Though the development of handicraft villages has not met the targets for the 2001-03 period, revenues have increased by 21-23 per cent. In Bat Trang Village, known for its ceramic and porcelain products, the annual turnover stood at VND280 billion, with exports accounting for 60 per cent. — VNS

Reprinted with permission from Vietnam News Agency


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