The number of traditional bamboo blind-making businesses in Myintaw village of Amarapura Township, Mandalay Region, where the handicraft has been practiced for over 30 decades, has begun to dwindle of late.
“I have been in the bamboo roll-up business for 30 years. Now, labor wages and raw material costs have become higher. Earlier, the Shweli bamboo variety used to make bamboo blinds cost K30,000, and now, the price has risen to K50,000. There are fewer practitioners in the industry now,” said Daw Kyi Hla, a bamboo roll-up manufacturer from Myintaw village. “We make bamboo blinds for sun shades and bamboo fish traps. Some bamboo fish traps are made with woven cane, and some are fashioned out of string and bamboo. Woven cane is much better than rope. The price of cane has also increased by K5,000,” said U Myo San, a bamboo roll-up maker.
“Over 300 bamboo blinds and 200 bamboo fish traps are sold every year. A single 10-square-foot bamboo blind fetches K50,000, while a bamboo fish trap (18 x 12 feet) is priced at K33,000. Bamboo blinds enjoy a high demand in June-August. The blinds are marketed in Amarapura Township and Mandalay city,” according to the bamboo blind-making businesses. —Tin Zar Hlaing (IPRTD) (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)