Making the Bangladesh Garment Sector Safe and Sustainable: Setting the Future Agenda

image-asset (10)
June 29, 2017

The Ready-Made Garment Industry (RMG) in Bangladesh employs more than 5 million workers and accounts for 80% of the country’s export income. Today’s announcement of the three year extension of the Bangladesh Accord for Fire and Building Safety (“Accord”) is good news.

It extends the Accord’s collaborative arrangement until 2021, building on the important work that has been done already by more than 200 global brands, several leading unions and civil society organization to address factory safety issue. It also places emphasis to Freedom of Association and the important role workers’ empowerment will play in achieving sustainable results on workplace safety. 

It also demonstrates that participating brands see value in a sector-wide collaboration to address safety concerns in Bangladesh’s garment factories and affirms their commitment to finishing the job. To date, the Accord and the Alliance for Bangladesh Workers Safety have inspected more than 2,300 factories and addressed 79% of the issues identified in those inspections. Still, the full remediation process has been completed in only 4% of factories, with expensive structural issues still to be addressed. 

As members of the Accord develop plans for the next three years they should pay special attention to the following:  

Realizing and maintaining safe workplaces in Bangladesh will be impossible without considering these factors.


See all