Commerce minister Tipu Munshi on Wednesday urged owners of the garment factories to ensure workplace safety along with increasing others facilities to make apparel sector sustainable.
‘Alongside ensuring reasonable wages, it is urgent to increase facilities of garment workers to produce the best quality products, which eventually will increase further export volume in the country,’ he told at the inaugural function of the Sustainable Apparel Summit in a city hotel.
The summit was jointly organised by SNV Netherlands and Dutch Bangla Chamber of Commerce and Industries.
Ambassador of France to Bangladesh Marie-Annick Bourdin, embassy of Kingdom of the Netherlands deputy head of mission and economic affairs and development cooperation head Jeroen Steeghs, Dutch-Bangla Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DBCCI) president Faruque Hassan and SNV Netherlands Development Organization country director Jason Belanger addressed the function.
Tipu said after the tragic Rana Plaza incident, the government had intensified its efforts on workplace safety and created congenial atmosphere for garment workers.
‘Bangladesh is the second largest garment products exporting country after China….. this is the highest foreign currency earning sector in Bangladesh and now we have 7 best factories in the world,’ the minister said over 4 million workers were working in the RMG sector .
Farhtheeba Rahat Khan of Jason Belanger, team leader, RMG Inclusive Business Programme of SNV Netherlands Development Organisation made a presentation titled ‘Workers’ well-being: a road towards apparel sustainability’ at the summit.
In her presentation, she said, ‘We have to focus on well-being of garment workers for ensuring sustainable apparel sector. Owners of garment factories should provide necessary facilities along with workplace safety for further development of the sector.’
Any step towards sustainability would ultimately benefit over 4 million workforce, most of them were women, Jeroen Steeghs said adding it is one of the key sectors where Bangladeshi female workers had felt economically empowered.
Ensuring the health and well-being of these workforces should be one of the vital steps towards sustainability of the RMG sector in Bangladesh.
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