The Handicrafts of Jammu & Kashmir have acquired worldwide fame for their exquisite refinement and aesthetic elegance. These crafts have great diversity and demand.

There are nearly 2.50 lacs artisans directly dependent upon handicrafts in the State for their livelihood and there is still great potential for more employment to be generated in this sector if markets are expanded and demand is increased. Presently, our handicrafts earn around Rs.1700 crores as foreign exchange every year.

In order to give greater impetus to the development of handicrafts, the Government have been constantly introducing new programmes and schemes. Craft Bazars and Expos are being organized in many places in the country and in these exhibitions the artisans come directly into contact with the customers and sell their products without the intervention of the middlemen. The artisans have been able to earn crores of rupees through these diversified marketing out-lets. To ensure that artisan have enough liquidity the Government has introduced Artisan Credit Card Scheme under which the Government pays 10% interest subsidy on loans upto to Rs.1.00 lacs for a period of 5 years.

Handicrafts Department has launched its official website which I am sure will lead to popularization of our crafts and also generate further interest among the connoisseurs and prospective buyers.

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