Bhubaneswar, Jan 30 (PTI) The Odisha government has rolled out its Handicrafts Policy 2019 for creating a vibrant and sustainable handicraft sector in the state. Also Read - Varun Dhawan-Natasha Dalal Wedding Guest List: Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Karan Johar To Be in Attendance

The objective of the policy is to empower handicraft artisans and make them lead partners in the development, chief secretary A P Padhi said. Also Read - Michael Vaughan Trolls Himself After Rishabh Pant Helps India Beat Australia in Historic Gabba Test

A proposal in this regard was approved at a Cabinet meeting, chaired by chief minister Naveen Patnaik, on Tuesday. Also Read - ‘Away From Gadgets’ – A Mountaineering Camp in the Lap of Mother Nature!

The policy aspires to focus on the handicraft sector in the state renowned for its craftsmanship, leverage the unique selling proposition of the skilled workforce and help enhance Odisha’s share of exports of handicraft goods.

“It recognises that without the artisans, there can be no handicrafts. The policy provides centre stage to the artisans and his masterpieces,” Padhi said.

The policy will enable easy availability of raw materials, continuous design support for development of market and utility products, collaborative effort for attractive, safe and eco-friendly packaging for handicrafts and targeted marketing of products.

Capacity building to enhance skill level, encourage entrepreneurship, coverage of handicraft artisans under various social security measures and welfare schemes are also part of the policy.

As part of the policy, the government would extend margin money assistance for availing bank finance, survey and database management of handicraft artisans, collaboration with different agencies such as NIFT, NID to infuse innovation in product design, quality, productivity and others.

Padhi said fiscal incentives as provided under IPR-2015 (industrial policy resolution) and MSME Development Policy, 2015 would be extended to the handicraft sector also.

Setting of facilitation centres for awareness and administration of incentive will also be part of the policy, Padhi said.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.