New Delhi, December 18, 2018: Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) has been supporting and curating grassroots enterprises and craftsmen across India, in the areas of product development, design & packaging sensitization, with the twin-objective of reviving the traditional arts and crafts of India, besides affording a sustainable means of livelihood to the artisans.

The Bank, through its training programmes and workshops, has been able to motivate second generation artisans into learning ancestral crafts, build a sustainable business and help gain due recognition for the various arts and crafts, at several platforms across India and overseas.

In order to further strengthen these efforts, Exim Bank along with Centre for Microfinance & Livelihood (CML, an initiative of Tata Trusts) has organized “Design Development Training Workshops” for artisans in Thoubal District, Manipur to support the Kauna cluster through a series of capacity building workshops, as part of the Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with CML. The workshops are being conducted at various levels namely, for Master Craftsperson, Intermediate, Long term Design Workshops and Product Diversification. CML Program Managers along with the ‘Livelihood Propulsion and Support Services’ (LPSS) – an entity of CML, and ODESH are managing the entire training program and will also monitor the progress of the artisans involved, over a period of six months post completion of the workshop, especially in the areas of business/ employment generation, thereby ensuring that the workshop results in concrete benefits for the artisans.

Exim Bank’s General Manager, Mr. Utpal Gokhale, mentioned that the Bank, through its Grassroots Initiatives for Development (GRID) program, provides hand holding support to artisans and craftpersons. He mentioned that the Bank has been curating many grassroot artisans and has been providing them training in the latest design / packaging techniques, which has helped them come up with newer utility products, while at the same time, showcase the traditional art form.  New colours, textures and materials that look attractive, are in great demand internationally.  This has opened up a new space in the design world where the products not only carry India’s rich heritage but also can also be put to use in day to day activities.

The inaugural ceremony of the training programme was held on 3 December 2018 and was attended by Mr. Lamiee Kamei, Director Handloom and Handicraft, Govt of Manipur, Mr. Vijay Yagnamurti and Mr Sharda Gautam from Tata Trusts and Mr. Partho Patwari, Chairman of LPSS and ED CML amongst other dignitaries.

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