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Closure of carpet firms leaves 2,00,000 workers redundant

08
Feb '07
Forced closure of carpet firms has resulted into 2,00,000 labourers becoming redundant. Labour unions associated with Maoists stormed offices of Nepal Woolen Carpet Exporters Association (NWCEA) and ten carpet factories last month, demanding that wages of carpet labourers be raised to Rs5,000 per month.

Government ban on production of carpets using machine-made-wool is responsible for decline in export of Nepali carpets. Carpets made of handmade wool have proved costlier.

Indian companies have benefited the most from closure of local firms. Labour cost for making one square metre of a 60 knots carpet is fixed at Rs400 by Indian enterprises.

In comparison, the basic monthly salary of a carpet factory worker in Nepal is Rs3,300. Consequently, rate of a local carpet in overseas markets is 60 percent higher than the price of an Indian carpet.


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