From Environment

Carpentry in Kirkuk: A profession on the verge of extinction

  • 2019-12-30
Carpentry in Kirkuk: A profession on the verge of extinction
Khalid Muhammad, 70 works as a carpenter for 50 years   Photo: Karwan Salehi

My name is Khalid Muhammad Ali, born in Kirkuk in 1949.

I started to work in the carpentry profession in 1970 in a shop in Kirkuk’s Rahimawa neighborhood.

I make all sorts of chairs, sofas, dining tables bedroom furniture, and anything the customers demand.

I have great passion for my work, and I have acquired a big deal of experience in dealing with customers.

In the 1980s, the Kirkuk Chamber of Commerce supported this profession through providing us with carpentry tools and materials, including teak, fiber glass, nails and glue; however things changed after 2003.

In the past, this business was booming as demand was high on handmade furniture but now carpentry is vanishing, with many craftsmen leaving the profession.

Ready-made furniture imported from Turkey has greatly affected our business. People do not realize that these products do not last for long. We offer a ten-year guarantee for the chairs we make.

We are now unable to earn a decent living, and we can’t afford to pay our shops’ rents, yet I love my job and this passion helps me go on.



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