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Eighty products received the UNESCO Award of Excellence for Handicrafts in South and Southeast Asia 2012

Bangkok, October 2012 – The UNESCO Award of Excellence for Handicrafts has been granted to 80 craft products from a total 189 entries in the South and South-East Asian subregions.

©Kraftangan Malaysia

The high standard of entries kept an international evaluation panel of experts in design, marketing and handicraft production busy for four days in Kuching, Malaysia, from 23 to 26 October 2012.

Jointly organized by UNESCO, the Malaysian Ministry of Information, Communications and Culture  and Malaysian Handicraft Development Corporation (Kraftangan Malaysia), and with the support of the Crafts Council of Malaysia and Society Atelier Sarawak, handicraft products from two subregions came together for the first time for an evaluation session, adding to the variety of crafts displayed at the event. The jury examined 119 handicraft submissions from South-East Asia and 70 products from South Asia. The experts named 47 products from South-East Asia and 33 products from South Asia as the award recipients of the year 2012.

The range of submissions was highly diverse, including traditionally woven textiles and natural fibres, metalworks, wood and stone carvings and ceramics. The products came from Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Viet Nam as well as Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka.

The international panels of experts systematically judged submissions through four key criteria: excellence in production and design, expression of identity, innovation and marketability, all essential attributes for outstanding craft creations. 

By recognizing such characteristics in craftsmanship, the programme aims to set quality standards, raise international awareness and strengthen the promotional potential for Asian handicraft products. 

A selection of the successful South and South-East Asia awardees are listed below. The winning entries will be on permanent display at SACICT Centre in Bangsai, Ayutthaya, Thailand, after their return from a major Asia-Pacific craft exhibition to be held in Kuwait in the first quarter of 2013. Photographs and details about the awards can be seen on the catalagues:

Click to download press release 

For more information on the Award of Excellence, please contact one of the project’s partners.





Regional Unit for Culture in Asia and the Pacific, Bangkok

Tel: +66-2-391-0577 ext 509, 514, 516

Fax: +66-2-391-0866






Malaysian Handicraft Development Corporation (Kraftangan Malaysia)

Tel: +6082-444 205
Fax: +6082-440 003 



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