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Strengthening US dollar hits Nepali carpet exports
Feb '13
Carpet exports from Nepal are likely to decrease further in 2013, as importers are cutting down their orders, as the prices of Nepali carpets are rising in world market due to strengthening of the US dollar vis-à-vis Nepali currency, in addition to rise in cost of production.
Stirred by rising prices of raw materials, Nepali carpets now cost around US$ 115 per sq ft as against last year’s US$ 93 per sq ft. 
In spite of their excellent quality and designs, rising prices of carpets due to rise in cost of production and strengthening of the US dollar, is impacting demand for Nepali carpets in world markets, President of the Nepal Carpet Exporters Association (NCEA) Anup Malla told Republica.
Mr. Malla said Nepali carpets now cost around 40 percent more than those made in India, its leading competitor. Thus, price alert global buyers are now shifting to low-cost destinations like China, India and some other countries that are able to export carpets to the EU and the US at lower rates. 
At the DEMOTEX international expo of floor coverings held last month in Germany, importers from the US and the EU said they may also cut orders as long power cut schedules and lack of skilled workforce that the Nepali exporters are enduring has raised uncertainty over their ability to timely execute the orders, Mr. Malla, who had attended the fair, said.
Nepali carpet factories are experiencing severe crisis of skilled workers due to flight of several workers to foreign countries in search of better opportunities.
Marking a year-on-year fall of 20 percent, Nepali carpet exports plummeted to Np Rs. 2.58 billion during first six months of the current fiscal. 
Volume-wise too, carpet exports plummeted to 250,616 sq ft  during first half of current fiscal from 383,281 sq ft of exports made during corresponding period of last fiscal.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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