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Secretary Gutierrez Supports Afghan Rug Industry

8.20.2006

Afghanistan’s rug industry was featured during a reception hosted by the Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington, D.C. on July 19. The event celebrated the first official joint U.S.-Afghan government delegation of Afghan rug & carpet producers. Ambassador Jawad welcomed the guests stating, “I am honored to be here with you this afternoon to showcase an Afghan product that is a symbol of our country’s culture, history and tradition.” The leader of the delegation Mr. Sayed Javed Andish then introduced his delegates and thanked the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Embassy’s Economic, Trade & Investment Department for providing opportunities to link directly to rug importers in the United States.

US Secretary of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez attended the reception, and spoke warmly of the Afghan people and his recent visit to Afghanistan. He restated the United States’ long-term commitment to the economic revitalization of Afghanistan, and wished the delegates a successful trip. Secretary Gutierrez said, “two-way trade between the United States and Afghanistan reached $330 million last year, a 43 percent increase over the previous year.” Afghan rugs are allowed access to the American market duty free, and hand woven rugs were designated as duty free in June 2005. Investment opportunities exist in Carpets and Textiles as well as a variety of other sectors in Afghanistan. Please visit www.afghanistan.business-gateways.com  for further information.

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