18:56, May 6, 2014
The sound of machines once again fills the halls of a former silk factory in Stepanakert, which ceased operations following the Karabakh War. Garment and textile production was restored in the factory named "Karmetakskombinat".
After 1988, the workshops reopened and closed several times, but this time the importers are committed. When Hetq staff visited the factory workshops, management was preparing for the factory's reopening.
Currently, the merchandise is sold to the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army, while civilian clothes are expected to be designed and sewn before the end of the year. Textile production engineer and technologist Anya Hakobjanyan is one of the Karmetakskombinat's oldest employees. With great fervor, she again returned to work at the factory, hoping that it will expand and more Karabakh residents will be able to secure employment.
"At this time, the former factory's old employees were rehired, since they know how to work the machines. But they are also accepting young people to work — those who are still learning, until they will begin to work in two shifts. The workers work very well, knowing that they will get their salary on time," she says.
Weavers are paid 80,000 AMD (about $193 USD) a month, while journeymen get paid much more. After production is in full force, management is preparing to pay people by contract — according to the meter of the fabric or item of clothing sewn. The machines are not new: they were purchased before the war, but they continue to be used. Sometimes they break down and are again restored.
The sewing workshop was likewise established last year and fulfills orders for the army. Mainly they sew underpants, shirts, and bed linen. Working here are 26 people, who are paid by contract, according to the type and quantity of goods they produce. The average monthly salary is about 70,000 AMD (about $169).
Engineer, designer Nune Baghdasaryan works on designing the clothing. She is constantly working on developing new sewing patterns. "We will soon move to a new workshop, which is currently being renovated. There we will have two departments — military and civilian. One will work on producing military clothing; the other, civilian clothing," she says.
Photo credit: Narek Aleksanyan
Camera operator: Saro Baghdasaryan
Music credit: Tigran Hamasyan