Economy, Domestic Economy

New German-Iran Trade Triggers Persian Rug Resurgence

New German-Iran Trade Triggers Persian Rug ResurgenceNew German-Iran Trade Triggers Persian Rug Resurgence

When it comes to oriental rugs, Tamin Wahdat can fully meet his customers’ demands. His business, based in Hamburg’s warehouse district, deals with rugs from India, Pakistan and Iran.

Among them are masterpieces such as a real Persian rug for €30,000.

“It is silk on silk. You can feel how beautiful and soft it feels. This is a kind of craft that only a master weaver can produce, that takes a long time and the material itself is also very expensive,” says Wahdat who is the owner of German rug trader, Wahdat Orientteppiche, Deutsche Welle reported.

For 35 years, Wahdat has dealt in all kinds of oriental carpets, though sales slowed over the past decade and only picked up in the last few years. Wahdat hopes for a return of the 80s Persian carpet boom.

“A lot of trucks came from Iran, or ships from overseas. So many, you hardly had time to take on the products and they were spread across the world, but Hamburg was really a hub for carpets,” he says.

The reputation of the hub in the oriental rug trade is something Hamburg wants to keep, especially after the lifting of economic sanctions against Iran. Germany has been able to import carpets but paying for the wares was tricky. Cash transfers via banks were almost impossible.

Wholesaler Ali Ipektchi deals exclusively with Iranian rugs and hopes now for more support from the banks.

“Of course, we’re expecting payments to become easier with the agreement made at the beginning of this year. That’ll make the entire sales process easier,” he said.

Dealers are also setting their sights on the North American market, where the trade embargo effectively banned the import of Persian rugs. As a wholesaler, Ipektchi wants to imports carpets from Hamburg into the US and Canada.

“We’re talking about 250 million customers. That is a huge market, if you can conquer it,” he says. “I think the Persian rug has a good shot at that. Before the embargo, it had significant market share there and the hope is that it can successively regain that.”

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