JK Govt ropes in e-commerce giant Amazon to promote, sell local crafts
Srinagar, SEP 27: The State’s Industries and Commerce Department has embarked on an ambitious and futuristic marketing project for local handicrafts and other products including paintings by roping in e-commerce giant Amazon for promoting and trading J&K’s exclusive crafts online. A joint meeting of the State Government officials, Amazon Executives and local representatives of industry and artisans was convened today under the Chairmanship of Principal Secretary Industries and Commerce, Shailendra Kumar at SanatGhar here. Director Handloom Development Department, Rubina Kousar, Managing Director J&K Handloom Development Corporation, Rakesh Sharma, Chief Executive Officer J&K KVIB, Raashid Ahmed Qadri, MD JK Handicraft Corporation, Ishtiaq Hussain Drabu, MD JK Industries, Javid Ahmad Khan, Director Handicrafts, Mushtaq Ahmad Shah, Amazon Executives and representatives of local industry were present at the meeting. Speaking on the occasion, Shailendra Kumar said tying up with online business giant Amazon will help promote exclusive JK specific products including handicrafts and handloom items and paintings on the e-commerce platform and will offer global market to the local artisans sitting in any corner of the state. He said the government is holding deliberations with the Amazon to have a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with them with regard to the marketing and promotion of JK’s exclusive products with a tagline of “Crafts from J&K”. He said JK’s products include Shawls, silk, wool, Handicrafts and other items from local industries are in great demand in the national and international markets and buyers are looking for such exclusive products mostly online. He said if these products are made available to the buyers through modern marketing and online business platforms, the artisans will be directly benefited. Kumar said once the formal MoU is signed with Amazon, the e-commerce hub can also educate, train and enable weavers and artisans to directly sell their products to its customers in India and even in international markets on their online platform. “Without any middleman, an artisan sitting in a remote village of JK will be able to directly sell his/her products to a customer sitting in any part of the world through Amazon thus increasing the reach, profit margin and sales of artisans,” he explained. He said Amazon will not only provide an online marketplace for marketing but will also engage with weavers and artisans across the State to train them on making the products more attractive, appealing and marketable online. He said the modern marketing techniques will also benefit the start-ups as they can use Amazon as a platform for marketing of their products. He said in future such techniques can also be used to sell horticulture-produce and other JK specific products for getting better sales and profits besides getting a global recognition. During the meeting, the directors of various departments and corporations presented their views with regard to the marketing of their produce and discussed with Amazon officials the possibilities through which the products of artisans can be sold on global platform thus making the socio-economic conditions of the artisans better-off. “All they need to start selling online is a bank account, a tax number and an internet connection,” he said. Shailendra Kumar said after deliberations with the Amazon, once all the terms and conditions are finalized, the Government will sign a MoU with the company to formally promote local products. Pertinently, Amazon has recently launched an online Handmade Store for Artisans to sell their unique, handcrafted goods reaching hundreds of millions of customers worldwide.