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Home Life Style Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Lucrative Hair Trade: A Global Hub for Premium Strands

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Lucrative Hair Trade: A Global Hub for Premium Strands

Selling to major traders, Kamil Khan fetches Rs 12,000 to 15,000 per kilo, transforming the venture into a lucrative enterprise.

by TNN Editor - 20 Nov, 2023 1530
khyber-pakhtunkhwas-lucrative-hair-trade-a-global-hub-for-premium-strands

Shaheen Afridi

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa stands as a vibrant hub for human hair markets, drawing significant attention from international buyers, notably China. Traders identify Afghanistan and Pakhtunkhwa as prime sources for the finest and priciest hair, where street scavengers play a pivotal role by offering a kilo of hair at an impressive Rs 15,000.

Kamil Khan, a former rickshaw driver turned entrepreneur, transitioned into this unique business six months ago. His primary source of hair comes from women who cut it due to illness. Selling to major traders, Kamil Khan fetches Rs 12,000 to 15,000 per kilo, transforming the venture into a lucrative enterprise.

Most hair buyers are Chinese

In the Haji Camp area of Peshawar, Abdullah, a prominent hair trader, notes that Chinese customers frequent his store in search of high-quality hair. Their consistent presence has been instrumental in sustaining the robust hair business in the region.

Also Read: Chilly Conditions Blanket Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Fog Alert Issued

Abdullah elaborates, "Chinese buyers have been coming here for years, engaging in various transactions, including hair deals. Their consistent business has been a boon for us."

Chinese traders continue to visit Peshawar, dealing not only in hair but also contributing to the export of wigs, artificial hair, and brushes worldwide.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is very profitable in terms of hair business

Wang Shi, a Chinese buyer, emphasizes the region's profitability, commending the locals for their excellent and robust hair. The use of natural ingredients in their haircare practices makes the sourced hair durable, aligning with the preferences of Chinese buyers.

Kamil Khan, selling 300 to 400 kilos of hair every week to big traders, collaborates with traders in various Peshawar locations, supplying collected hair to Islamabad for eventual export to China.

Pakistan is the fifth largest exporter of human hair in the world

Peshawar's hair traders reveal that Pakistan ranks fifth globally in human hair exports. Over 30 tons are exported monthly to China from Islamabad alone, positioning Pakistan as a key player in the international hair trade.

Traders emphasize the significant influence of climate on hair quality, highlighting Afghanistan as the source of the best and most expensive strands. Despite challenges, the profession involves over 20,000 people, primarily Afghans engaged in garbage collection. The recent expulsion of unregistered Afghan refugees has impacted hair sales, affecting the industry.