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Digital transformation uplifts traditional craft villages in rural Hanoi
Khanh Khanh 21:17, 2023/10/24
Phu Xuyen District will set up an e-commerce platform with the expectation that it would open up new avenues of digital transformation for handicraft villages.

Traditional craft villages in Phu Xuyen District on the outskirts of Hanoi are embarking on a digital transformation to expand their consumer markets, using social media, building websites, and opening stores on e-commerce platforms.

30% of production sold online

   Hand-woven bamboo products for export in Phu Tuc Craft Village. Photo: Tran Viet/The Hanoi Times

Recognizing digital transformation as inevitable for efficient production and business development, handicraft villages in Phu Xuyen District are accelerating digitization and automation, shifting from manual work to digital data and processes.

Nguyen Van Dau, a renowned tailor specializing in suits and blazers from Chinh Van Hamlet, Van Tu Commune, said that in addition to investing in modern machinery, many households in the craft village have recently sought clients through social media and e-commerce platforms. By sharing pictures and videos of the tailoring process on Facebook and Zalo, they have garnered a large number of customers.

He said the younger generation in the craft village is the most adept at sales channels on social media platforms, achieving a total online sales volume of about 30%.

Meanwhile, Tan Dan Commune, which specializes in fine woodwork, is also innovating sales methods, especially through digital technology, and speeding up digital transformation from management and operation to production and sales activities.

Nguyen Minh Cong, owner of the commune's fine woodworking workshop, said their beds, cabinets, tables, and chairs are heavy and difficult to ship. Therefore, introducing the products online helps save time and transportation costs for customers who inquire about the products before making the purchase decision.

"Through the online platform, we can update images and new product designs, information about wood materials, designs, sizes, and offer doorstep delivery. As a result, the product cost is reduced, which benefits both buyers and sellers," Cong pointed out.

Vu Van Dinh, another woodworker in Thuong Hamlet, Chuyen My Commune, said that selling products through e-commerce platforms and social media was previously ineffective due to a lack of expertise and a limited customer base.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, it was difficult to export to the Chinese market and sell products to provinces and cities. Transportation of raw materials and consumption of products within the country also faced many difficulties, according to Dinh.

To ensure uninterrupted business, many households in the craft village have turned to social media and e-commerce platforms, Dinh added. "Thanks to this "way out", the supply of handicraft products such as wooden carvings and mother-of-pearl inlays has been ensured," he said.

E-commerce platform to be launched

 Phu Xuyen District's e-commerce platform will be launched soon. Photo: Nguyen Truong/The Hanoi Times

The district is currently home to 154 traditional craft villages and clusters, of which 78 craft villages are under strong development, another 43 have been recognized by the Hanoi People's Committee as traditional craft villages.

These villages practice mother-of-pearl inlay, bamboo and rattan weaving, woodworking, agriculture, food processing, textiles, mechanics, fishing net and leather shoe making.

Ranked third among the capital's 30 districts in terms of the number of trading villages, Phu Xuyen's handicrafts have diverse designs and distinct cultural characteristics, have created a large market, and provide employment for more than 80% of local people and those in neighboring areas.

However, according to Nguyen Thanh Xuan, Party Secretary of Van Tu Commune, the application of digital economy platforms in the production and value chain development in craft villages here is still in its infancy.

A few craft villages are applying digital transformation in product promotion, introduction, and online distribution channels, he added.

The number of production units applying technology and e-commerce in business is still modest, as the majority of owners are also farmers. The business mainly relies on production experience, with little consideration for the application of scientific and technological knowledge,

Similarly, Le Van Binh, Chairman of the People's Committee of Phu Xuyen District, said that access to market information, trade links with supermarkets, and import-export businesses of craft villages are weak. Investment in high-tech production requires substantial financial resources, while most handicraft villages are short of capital.

He believed that in the future, in order to effectively use digital transformation to gain practical benefits, Phu Xuyen will continue to coordinate with relevant departments and agencies to effectively implement vocational training programs for rural workers, focusing on guiding craft villages in applying technology in production, processing, and sales; teaching people e-commerce knowledge to enhance competitiveness and improve production efficiency in craft villages.

Recently, the district government has set up an e-commerce platform that gathers typical products of craft villages in the district in one place. As a result, instead of searching for Phu Xuyen Craft Village products through a labyrinth of channels, customers now only need to access the district's e-commerce platform to find products, suppliers and customers, and brand promotion.

"In the upcoming 4th Phu Xuyen Craft Village Festival, which will be held from October 26 to 29, the Phu Xuyen District e-commerce platform will be launched, with the expectation of opening up new ways in the digital transformation of craft villages," said Nguyen Trong Vinh, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Phu Xuyen District.

TAG: Hanoi news Vietnam news Hanoi craft villages Hanoi Phu Xuyen Village hanoi digital transformation
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