The government is going to register 66 weavers as authorised users of geographical indication (GI) of Jamdani so that they can commercially utilise the GI recognition for the product.
Registered weavers will be considered as authorised producers of Jamdani, the country’s one of the finest textiles, once the process of registration is completed.
As the first step of the move, the Department of Patents, Designs and Trademarks on Wednesday published a gazette notification including the names of the weavers in the GI Authorised Users Journal giving two months to stakeholders concerned for raising objection, if any, against any users.
The weavers and manufacturers will receive authorised users certificates from the DPDT of the Industries ministry if no objection is raised.
Of the enlisted weavers, 60 operate in Narayanganj, mainly in Rupganj Upazila, and the remaining are from Dhaka, Jamalpur and Jhalkathi.
In November 2016, the DPDT handed over the GI certificate for Jamdani to BSCIC as the first GI product of the country.
In August 2017, Hilsa, the national fish of the country, got the GI registration following application of DoF.
DPDT registrar Md Sanowar Hossain on Thursday told New Age that none except authorised users will be allowed to weave or produce Jamdani once all genuine weavers are registered as authorised users.
Weavers will also have to maintain quality to continue the use of the certificate, he said, adding that authorised users certificate will be cancelled in case of failure in maintaining quality.
Registration of authorised users will increase the bargaining capacity of weavers in seeking additional premium or at least ensuring fair prices of Jamdani products, he said.
Sanowar said that they would sit with the Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation and Department of Fisheries to make them aware about branding and exploring financial benefits of GI products.
A GI is a name or sign used on certain products which corresponds to a specific geographical location or origin (e.g. a town, region, or country), says Wikipedia.
The use of a geographical indication may act as a certification that the product possesses certain qualities, is made according to traditional methods, or enjoys a certain reputation, due to its geographical origin, it adds.
Officials of the DPDT said that it is now up to BSCIC and DoF how they exploit the recognition and explore economic benefit altogether with weavers and fisherman.
In case of Jamdani, it will depend on BSCIC on how much they can control the production, quality, supply chain and marketing channel, they said.
The BSCIC can organise the weavers for creating a unique channel of marketing of Jamdani products for ensuring fair price along
with additional premium for the product.
Weavers in the country hardly get fair price for their products due to lack of control in marketing channel, even direct access to market, they said, adding that most of the grassroots weavers are forced to sell their products at lower price to middlemen and traders.
Authorised users will be able to use GI logo while marketing Jamdani products including famous Jamdani saree both locally and internationally, said a high official of the DPDT.
Weavers being organised can fix the prices of their products and work together to prevent production of Jamdani by unauthorised weavers and counterfeit Jamdani products, he said.
Exporters will also be able to use GI logo for Jamdani which will increase demand of the product abroad due to reputation as a GI product.
But BSCIC will have to apply for GI protection for Jamdani in the export destination country, officials said.
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