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Amazon India announced the launch of the ‘Spotlight North East’ storefront on its marketplace on July 14.

The storefront will bring together a range of unique local products and hidden gems from the Northeast region and showcase them to millions of Amazon customers across India.

Inaugurated in a virtual event by Jitendra Singh, minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office, the storefront launch comes close on the heels of the announcement of the ‘Spotlight North East’ programme at Amazon Smbhav in April this year.

“The Northeast India region is known for its unique GI products including Chakshesang Shawl from Nagaland, Muga Silk from Assam, different types of weaves like the Moirang Phee from Manipur, varieties of teas and spices like the Mizo Chilli, among others. Amazon will also enable participation of artisans and weavers from the region in key sale events through the year and help generate demand for their products from customers across the country,” a statement from the company said.

The ‘Spotlight North East’ programme has been designed to boost the local economy, create jobs and accelerate financial inclusion and empowerment of women across the eight states of the Northeast region of the country. “‘Spotlight North East’ will focus on bringing the benefits of ecommerce to the region’s 50,000 weavers, artisans and small businesses by 2025 by facilitating access to technology and markets,” the e-commerce major said.

The initiative will accelerate digitization in the region and provide an opportunity for local businesses to leverage e-commerce, helping Northeast India leapfrog into a robust economy and increasing its share in the country’s digital economy. Over the next 5 years, Amazon will bring 5000+ unique craft-based products, Geographical Indication (GI) products and other local products on its India marketplace and boost exports of special commodities from Northeast like tea, honey, and spices etc. to millions of customers globally, it added.

Jitendra Singh, minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office, said: “One of the key priorities for our government is to establish Northeast as an important business destination in Indian subcontinent. I would like to congratulate Amazon India on the launch of the ‘Spotlight North East’ initiative. This will positively contribute to the fulfilment of this vision by boosting sales and exports of exclusive commodities of the Northeast, helping turn this region into a commercial hub for introducing the world to ‘Made-in-India’ products.”

Amit Agarwal, global senior VP and country head, Amazon India, said: “We are excited to launch a dedicated ‘Spotlight North East’ storefront on showcasing region’s unique handicrafts, handlooms, and GI products to customers across India. This is part of the ‘Spotlight North East’ programme announced recently at Amazon Smbhav 2021 and is aimed at enabling MSMEs like artisans, weavers, local shops from the region with technology and ecommerce to reach customers across India and the world. We are fully committed to support the Indian government’s endeavour to turn the Northeast states into a commercial hub that provides unique ‘Made in India’ products representing our rich, diverse culture.”

Amazon has partnered with NEHHDC to engage, skill and digitally enable artisan and weaver communities in the eight states across the region and bring to them the benefits of the Amazon Karigar program. The company will continue to collaborate with government and non-government organizations to host training workshops that will enable MSMEs across the region accelerate their businesses by leveraging various growth opportunities with Amazon. These workshops will also include ideation sessions with leading designers from India on emerging trends to support artisans and weavers create contemporary designs.

“North Eastern Handicrafts and Handloom Development Corporation is delighted to associate with Amazon India as the online marketplace. The exclusive store on Amazon Karigar will help the products made by the artisans and weavers of Northeast to reach millions of Amazon customers,” said RK Singh, managing director at NEHHDC.

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