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'Made in India' X'mas for the West

'Made in India' X'mas for the West

'Made in India' rules the world this Christmas.

New Delhi: 'Made in India' rules the world this Christmas.

From the Santa to crosses and pendants that the Christians across the world wear on Christmas, various types of hangings, decoratives, Christmas tree, electric lighting sets, artificial flowers including plastic flowers, candles and tapers that are so much part and parcel of Christmas across the world are largely being sourced cities of Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh this year.

Made by small-time Indian artisans, these products are much in demand for high-end stores across the Western world this season.

"Global retail giant Wal-Mart's recent announcement that its X'mas ring this year has been designed in India made big news. But the fact is that Indian products dominate the 'Holiday decor' segment of the high-end stores like Pottery Barn, Neiman Marcus and Anthropologies in America and also Europe," says Seem Bait of Aryan Worldwide, a Delhi-based exporter.

"Wal-Mart is a retail store for mass market. But Indian products, which are all hand-made are generally made for high-end stores. Because of the richness of design and color forecast, that they offer, they command certain 'respect' and price index," says Bait.

Agrees Rakish Kumar, Executive Director, Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH): "Manufacturers from Delhi, Moradabad, Agra are producing various Christmas products which are being supplied to the big stores like JCpeny, DSS, Blooming Dales and Wal-mart."

As per the market estimates, the world market of Christmas festive products is around $10 billion. China, Hong Kong, Germany , USA, Netherlands, Thailand, Taiwan, Poland, Canada and UK are the top 10 exporters of the Christmas festive articles. As per export statistics, India does not fall under first 10 category, but the exports of Christmas festive articles from here are on the rise, notes Kumar.

"What we need to understand is that Indian products are not for the mass market like the Chinese, which are all machine made, wear a plastic look and are available in bulk. India, on the other hand, offers hand-made decorative items, especially those in zari with zardosi work. They have a very rich look, offer colour forecast and are for the niche market," says Bhatia.

"The designs, colours, trends, everything is finalised a year before, we are already working on the 2007 Christmas and the orders would be shipped by next July. The projections and trends were finalised in July-August this year," he says, noting "besides big stores, we also work with big importers who supply to these stores."

(With agency inputs)