The Lao Handicraft Festival (LHF), the leading event for handicraft artisans in Laos organized annually by the Lao Handicraft Association (LHA), is set to extend its reach to markets in Asian countries, especially Japan and Thailand. Over 200 handicraft producers will be selling and exhibiting at the Lao Handicraft Festival 2012, which will be held at Lao-ITECC in Vientiane on November 1-7, 2012.
The festival, which is being held concurrently with the 9th Asia-Europe Meeting Summit (ASEM 9) hosted by the Lao PDR, aims to attract ASEM guests, domestic and international traders, tourists from Asia and beyond, as well as the local community.
International visitors to the festival will discover that Lao handicrafts are relatively well preserved. Laos has a rich mix of ethnic diversity and each culture has distinct handicraft traditions. At the festival, visitors can meet artisans from many provinces of Laos and discover a wide range of craft products on display.
“ Lao artisans have great skill in natural textiles and natural dyes. Japanese customers are often very interested in the craftsmanship and traditions of Lao artisans. Silk, cotton, hemp and other natural fibres, and natural indigo dye products are always very popular with Japanese people. The Lao Kimono Project, which fuses Lao and Japanese traditions, will be one of many highlights of the Grand Fashion Show on November 1” said Mrs Kimie Oguro, a Senior Volunteer with JICA in Laos.
Also at the event, the LHA will run seminars to help its members build knowledge on business management, marketing, product design and quality. Access to market is still a major challenge for rural handicraft producers. A week of selling at the Lao Handicraft Festival can increase sales and income for handicraft producers. Each year at the festival, artisans are able to establish commercial relationships with local and international traders. This can significantly increase orders and contracts for products.
The LHA has organized the Lao Handicraft Festival to provide a venue for artisans to sell products and meet buyers annually since 2001. The major goal of the event is to support Lao handicraft producers to supply to domestic markets while steadily moving towards supplying international markets.
About Lao Handicraft Association
The Lao Handicraft Association (LHA), the peak body representing handicraft artisans in Laos, was established as a non-profit organisation on April 1st 1998. It operates in Vientiane under the supervision of the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Regional offices of the LHA are located in Luang Prabhang, Xiengkhouang, Houaphan, Savannakhet and Champasak. The LHA has a membership of over 120 artisans who make a wide range of products including textiles, jewellery, non-timber forest products, recycled and wood products, pottery and cultural items.
For more information please contact:
Mr Bouabane Kongdy