International handicraft center is set up in Risbaf factory

International handicraft center is set up in Risbaf factory

TEHRAN – To breathe new life into the historic Risbaf factory in Isfahan, which has been closed since the 2000s, the plan is to establish an international handicraft center within the business unit.

“The handicraft centre will transform the historic Risbaf factory into a hub for artisans from all over the world,” a local official said at a news conference on Monday. “This initiative aims to promote the development, dissemination and practical research in the field of handicrafts on an international scale.”

According to Mehran Zeinalian, a memorandum of understanding is being drawn up between the UN Tourism Department and the Iranian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts to facilitate the establishment process.

He concluded that this development is expected to give a significant boost to the craft sector and tourism in the province.

The Risbaf mill, one of the last remaining wool spinning mills in Isfahan, which was registered as a national heritage site in 2002, was previously owned by Bank Melli. For many years, there were plans to transfer ownership to the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts to establish a regional museum in Isfahan. However, these plans were delayed due to the financial interests of Bank Melli shareholders in the mill.

Last December, a decisive step was taken to preserve this historic site and the Risbaf factory was officially handed over to the Isfahan Cultural Heritage Department.

To facilitate its restoration and preservation, the building was placed under the care of the municipality.

A ceremony was held at the end of May this year to mark the start of the factory’s restoration, coinciding with International Museum Day.

According to officials involved, the restoration project aims to transform the factory into a thriving crafts centre, promoting international cooperation and exchange among craftsmen.