Denpasar, Bali (ANTARA News) - Bali has begun expanding its overseas handicraft market to Russia and Africa to offset a slump in exports to traditional destinations caused by the global crisis, a local trade and industry official said.

Bali`s handicraft exports to traditional destinations in the January-September 2011 period dropped 10.22 percent from 167.9 million US dollars to 150.7 million US dollars, according to Putu Bagiada, head of the export section of Bali`s trade and industry office, here Friday.

The decline was caused by unfavorable world economic conditions, especially in countries that were the traditinal markets for Bali`s handicraft products.

Therefore, Bali had now begun trying to find new markes in Russia and Africa. So far, only a relatively small volume of handicraft products had been exported to the alternative markets.

But basically there was great interest for Balinese handicraft items made of wood or metal in Russia and Africa, he said.

One of the handicraft products that had begun to rise in demand in Russia and Africa was ready-made wooden houses, he said.

Bali`s exports of wooden handicraft items such as sculptures and household articles to its traditional markets in the January-September 2011 period reached a total value of 46.9 US dollars or down 21.37 percent from a year earlier when the figure was 59.7 million US dollars.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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