The Walt Disney Company has decided to restore production of branded products in Bangladesh after more than eight years of withdrawal from factories in the country, garment industry executives said. Welcoming the move, the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) hoped to attract orders of over $ 500 million in the future.
He had announced that the company would consider allowing production in Bangladesh in the future, if factories agreed to partner with the Better Work program, Faruque Hassan, president of BGMEA, told IANS on Friday.
The RMG team warmly welcomed Walt Disney’s timely move in recognition of the industry’s all-round progress and transformation, especially in the areas of workplace safety, social standards and environmental sustainability.
Factories in the country participating in the ILO’s Better Work Bangladesh program will have the right to become a supplier, while they must participate in NiIRAPON, an alliance of 23 foreign RMG brands and RMG Sustainability Council (RSC) as well as carrying out specific remediation. .
Hassan said: “This is great and good news for Bangladesh … Walt Disney has decided to restore its production of branded merchandise in Bangladesh after more than eight years and has re-included Bangladesh in their country’s list. procurement authorized with international labor standard audits. “
Faruque said Walt Disney stopped production at factories in Bangladesh in May 2013 following the Tazreen Fashion fire in November 2012 that killed 112 RMG workers, and later the Rana collapse. Plaza Building which had killed more than 1,100 people, mainly ready-to-wear clothing. workers.
Then the Walt Disney Company sent a letter in March 2013 to suppliers and licensees to move production to Bangladesh to strengthen safety standards in its supply chain and around $ 500 million in business was transferred from Bangladesh to Vietnam, India and Myanmar.
Now he has announced the re-establishment of Bangladesh as a list of authorized sourcing countries with ILS (International Labor Standard) audits. It is recognition of the industry’s all-round progress and transformation, especially in the area of ââoccupational safety, social standards and environmental sustainability, Faruque said.
Hong Kong-based supply chain compliance solutions provider “QIMA” ranked Bangladesh as the 2nd highest ethical manufacturing country in its recent “QIMA Q1 2021 Barometer” report. The rating included performance against parameters such as hygiene, health and safety, child and youth labor, labor practices including forced labor, worker representation, disciplinary practices and discrimination, working hours and wages, and waste management.
The study was conducted at a time when Covid disrupted the global fashion industry and supply chain, and maintaining such a level of compliance is a testament to our resilience and commitment.
Additionally, advancements in cleaner, greener manufacturing are a testament to the industry’s commitment and actions towards building a sustainable supply chain.
Through these actions and transformation, Bangladesh has positioned itself well as the preferred sourcing partner of conscious brands like Disney, which is committed to fostering safe, inclusive and respectful workplaces in its manufacturing plants. of the whole world.
Bangladesh, home to the world’s most LEED green factories, has 144 USGBC certified LEED green factories, 41 of which are platinum, and is earning the trust of global brands and consumers through its unremitting efforts during the last decade.
Faruque mentioned that the entire safety transformation agenda is supported and facilitated by government, ILO, international brands, manufacturers and global unions in a transparent manner.
BGMEA, as the only association in the world, is honored with the â2021 USGBC Leadership Awardâ for its exemplary leadership in promoting environmental sustainability and green industrialization in the RMG industry.
Bangladesh’s RMG industry has made unprecedented efforts and investments to ensure safety covering fire, electrical and structural integrity and strong follow-up of factory refurbishment to create a culture of safety while promoting the well-being of workers, said the president of BGMEA speaking to IANS.
“With Bangladesh’s reestablishment as an authorized sour country, we will be able to attract orders of over $ 500 million,” the BGMEA president hoped.