The committee concerned with the preservation of traditional handicrafts discussed, during its first meeting, the mechanism of action to revive traditional heritage crafts that are threatened with extinction, preserve their authenticity, and correct the name of Sheikh Al-Kar through accurately describing each craft, setting controls, standards, and professional and heritage frameworks to grant the eligibility of this title and review previously granted titles.
Minister of Industry Ziad Sabbagh stressed during the meeting the necessity of integrating data and information among all concerned parties in the committee to find a way to properly frame the work of craftsmen, pointing out that the ministry is working on developing the law governing the General Union of Craftsmen.
He pointed out that one of the committee's tasks is to document the specificity of each craft at the level of each region, preserve it from extinction, and establish specialized craft incubators for it.
The representative of the Syrian Trust for Development, Reem Al-Ibrahim, referred to the secretariat’s work to include a number of Syrian heritage crafts on the World Heritage lists and to develop a national plan for each element to be included, while the engineer, Rola Aqili, representative of the Ministry of Culture indicated that the ministry has developed a national strategy to preserve the intangible heritage and is currently working on Issuance of the intangible heritage law and the development of the national list to document it.
The representative of the Watan Document Foundation, Engineer Laila Hamdan, explained that the Foundation is working to document traditional handicrafts in the framework of working to preserve them, noting the need for the committee to work to secure the appropriate conditions for the continuity of these crafts.
For her part, Eng. Rama Al-Sheikh, representing the Ministry of Tourism, explained that the ministry is working to find incubators and heritage markets in all governorates, enabling craftsmen to participate in all promotional exhibitions free of charge, in addition to working on restoring ancient markets and inns.
It was agreed during the meeting that the committee would hold intensive meetings during the coming period to crystallize the work of all parties in a unified framework, determine work priorities and proceed in parallel in the points discussed to correct work mechanisms in all gatherings concerned with heritage professions and prepare unified training programs for each craft.
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