The Ministry of Commerce has now lifted the ban on exporting non-medical face masks and the Khadi and Village Industries Commission plans to start exporting to countries including the US and Dubai.

KVIC hopes to increase Khadi production by exporting handloom face masks – Khadi and Village Industries Commission- Facebook

KVIC believes there is a large global demand for non-surgical face masks as the world continues to battle the coronavirus pandemic. The organisation plans to begin exporting handloom masks, which have the added benefit of being sustainable, to countries including the US, Dubai, Mauritius, and a number of European and Middle Eastern countries through Indian embassies in the countries, it said in a statement.

“The export of Khadi masks will lead to spike in production and ultimately create large scale employment opportunity for artisans in India,” KVIC’s chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena said in a statement. Part of KVIC’s work is to increase India’s global handloom exports and domestic Khadi production.

While face masks exports were banned, KVIC received government and public orders totalling eight lakh masks and has supplied six lakh masks during lockdown, it said. The organisation has distributed 7.5 lakh masks to District Authorities across India.

The organisation has developed its own mask designs including silk and double- and triple- layered cotton masks. The masks are biodegradable, KVIC said.