Carpet Industry – An Overview

Carpet was the major attraction of many royal palaces and aristocrat families in the early periods. Nowadays carpet plays a significant role in the interior decoration; the use of carpets in the houses and business establishments are highly desirable. In the ancient times this industry was in its boom with many skilled artisans and weavers. Jute yarn and silk threads are the important raw materials for the carpet industries. Recently synthetic yarns are also used for the production of mats and rugs.
Availability of raw materials, skilled workers, understanding of the traditional weaving patterns, accessibility of capitals, competition, marketability etc are the major factors affecting the existence of this industry.

The beauty of the handmade carpets from different countries depicts the heritage and aesthetic sense of the weavers of that particular country. China, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Persian countries, France, US, England, Russia are the major contributors to this industry. Millions of weavers are working day and night in the carpets and mat industries in order to meet the demands of the mass.

Industrialization in late 30's introduced the concepts of mechanized patterns for weaving the rugs and mats, which initiated the concept of mass production. The US carpet industry commenced its mechanized operations in the year 1791 in Philadelphia and the first broadloom carpet was introduced in the year 1877.
Over the centuries Iranian hand woven carpets gained much attraction in the world wide. The diversified designs, super quality and brilliant hand work keep preserving the world wide demand for the Iranian carpets in the last few decades. But the economic recession in the Europe, Japan and United States affects the export of Iranian carpets from 2000 onwards.

By 2002, the export for these carpets was dropping down $ 600 million by compared to the previous years. Carpets from India also have remarkable glory in the minds of carpet lovers of domestic and international markets. But the heritage of Indian carpets is still concerted in the corners of villages. Numbers of artisans are working in different places of India like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat etc
In Pakistan carpet manufacturing is mainly undertaking in the areas like Quetta, parts of NWFP, Karachi and Attock. We can see millions of carpet weaving looms in Attock area itself. Pakistan is exporting carpets and carpets mainly to USA, Germany, Italy, the UK, France, and UAE.Till 2000, the export from various countries to the international market was stable.

The world wide economic recession affects the export of carpets; this affects the life of the weavers also. Mechanization of this industry coarsely hit the daily lives of the artisan's families, most of them left jobless and finds other jobs. Afghan refugees were the major carpet weavers in Pakistan; the return of these refugees created a big declination in the production of carpets. Lack of raw materials, lack of professional approach, competition internally and externally, lack of coordination, shortage of working capitals etc. are other factors reducing the growth of this industry. Now the Governments of various nations are providing different platforms for recovering carpet industry from its slowdowns.