China: a new market for handwoven Iranian carpets

For exquisite and luxurious handwoven Iranian carpets, the Chinese market has great demand. However, these potentials have been underestimated for many years, claims the Head of the Iran Confederation of Exports, Mohammad Lahouti.

“The US market is the main market for handwoven Iranian carpets which is expected to close down after the new wave of sanctions”, said Mr Lahouti to IRNA (Islamic Republic News Agency).

In addition to America and Europe, there are new markets for Iranian rugs such as China. It’s up to the government to assist exporters in replacing the American and European markets with these new markets. Unlike the European market which seeks affordable handwoven rugs, the Chinese market has a large demand for luxurious and expensive carpets”.

Mr Lahouti believes that during sanctions, the government must seek to carve a share of this market via trade delegations and embassies must seek out new markets.

Iranian carpet has two main markets: The traditional market includes the USA, Germany and Italy while the second market includes Russia, China, South Africa and a number of Latin American countries.

Among these new markets, China is the most prominent market for Iranian rugs. However, currently it ranks seventeenth importer of Iranian rugs.

Based on numbers from Iran Customs office, the export of Iranian handwoven rugs reached 424 million dollars in 1396 which had grown by 18% compared to the previous year.

Fereshteh Dastpak, Head of the National Center for Iranian Rugs assessed the value of the export of rugs as 100 million dollars over the first four months of the current Iranian fiscal year.

“This number indicates 21.7% growth compared to the same period, last year”, says Mrs Dastpak. “During this period, the exports of rugs to the US have nearly doubled. In the first four months of last year, 21 million dollars’ worth of handwoven rugs were exported to the US and this number grew to 38 million dollars this year.”

She added that last year, the total carpet export to the US topped 126 million dollars. The American market makes nearly 30% of Iran’s rug exports.

After the US, the main markets for Iranian rugs are Germany, Lebanon, England and Japan. Last year Germany imported 57.5 million dollars worth of carpets from Iran.

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