Minister of Tourism, Handicrafts, and Social and Solidarity Economy, Fatim-Zahra Ammor, chaired the first meeting of the steering committee of the Safeguarding and Promotion of intangible cultural heritage, related to the Moroccan Handicrafts with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
As part of the agreement signed between the Ministry of Tourism and UNESCO in November 2022, to establish a sustainable system for the exchange of expertise in the field of crafts, Ammor chaired the first meeting of the project, which was attended by the Regional Director of the UNESCO office for the Maghreb, Eric Falt.
This meeting witnessed the launch of the project the “Safeguarding of endangered knowledge and skills related to handicrafts through their transmission to younger generations”, as well as the approval of the process of the transmission and selection of artisans possessing endangered knowledge and know-how, who will hold the title of “Treasures of Traditional Moroccan Arts”.
“Indeed, several skills related to the trades of Moroccan handicrafts are at risk of extinction for different reasons, including the non-transmission of knowledge to younger generations by skilled artisans,” said the Ministry of Tourism in a statement.
In an initial phase, six traditional skills and know-how at risk of extinction were identified during this steering committee. These are the Blousa Oujdia, the Embroidered Saddles, the Lutherie, the Zelige of Tetouan, and the Tent Weaving.
The next steps will identify 6 master craftsmen who master these skills and transmit their knowledge to young apprentices through specific training programs.
The Ministry’s statement concluded that this program will be expanded to cover 30 knowledge and know-how at risk of extinction.