Myanmar glazeware businesses surviving on popular appeal

A man is crafting a clay pot at a pottery in Sagaing Region. Photo: Min Htet Aung (Mandalay sub-printing house)
A man is crafting a clay pot at a pottery in Sagaing Region. Photo: Min Htet Aung (Mandalay sub-printing house)

Myanmar people are continuing to use traditional craft products despite the entry of their modern substitutes in the domestic market these days. That is the reason the glazeware industry is continuing to survive in Myanmar, according to glazeware businesses in Sagaing Region.
“Glazeware businesses can be found in Nwenyein, Shwetite, Shwegun, Magout, and Malar villages of Kyaukmyaung Township, Shwebo District, Sagaing Region. They have been operating as family businesses for generations,” said U Tint, a glazeware entrepreneur from Nwenyein village.
“The glazeware are made by mixing yellow clay and red clay of high quality. Natural clay and Myanmar handicraft arts are the additional inputs in our glazeware. As glazeware are currently being sold as handicraft products, the industry will not fade and will survive in the future,” he added.
Every year, a large number of tourists visit glazeware businesses in Sagaing Region and observe them. Therefore, the five villages of Nwenyein, Shwetite, Shwegun, Magout, and Malar have jointly set up a tourism committee to boost tourism and improve their livelihoods.
“Every year, more than 2,000 tourists visit Sagaing Region’s glazeware businesses. The villages they visited did not offer any added attractions besides the glazeware businesses. So, the villages could not earn any additional income through the tourism sector. Therefore, the villagers from the five villages are now trying to make arrangements for accommodation and setting up souvenir shops for tourists. The project will help develop education, health, and other sectors in the villages,” said U Soe Soe from Sagaing Region’s Tourism Development Committee.
Most villages in Sagaing region are involved in the glazeware industry. Men can earn K5,000 per day and women can earn K4,000 per day in the glazeware industry. Professionals can earn about K10,000 per day. The glazeware are shipped via water transport to neighbouring townships in Sagaing Region. They are currently priced at K25,000 per pot in the market.—Min Htet Aung (Mandalay Sub-printing House)

(Translated by La Wonn)

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