Instructor: Daniel Wong
Fire in a Bangladesh Garment Factory
Bangladesh is one of the countries with large textile industries in the world. This sector accounts for nearly 80% of total annual exports of the country. The textile industry provides employment for about 4 million workers. Prime Minister of this country, Sheikh Hasina said that she, the textile business is the only way to help more people out of grinding poverty. In 2005, global trade agreements limit the number of garment exports to the EU and the US have begun to expire. World Bank forecasts exports of Bangladesh garment will wilt under the onslaught of cheap goods from China. However, according to estimates by McKinsey, garment exports of Bangladesh tripled from 2005 to 2010 and is expected to triple again in 2020, to nearly $ 50 billion / year. The secret of success is encapsulated in four words: cheap labor. According to the Japan External Trade Organization, the average monthly salary of 2009 workers in Dhaka is 47 USD, compared with 235 USD and 100 USD in Shenzhen in Hanoi. By 2010, Bangladesh has about 5,000 garment factories, second only to China, Indonesia and Vietnam put on.
According to a study by Yale University, as of 2011, about 12% of women aged 15 to 30 years old working in the textile industry in Bangladesh. Their working conditions and wages worse unchanged from 2000 through 2010. Approximately 70% of the 988 workers surveyed were boss scolding and over 40% were beaten, sexually harassed. More than half of the women interviewed are not allowed to be legally guaranteed maternity leave of 100 days. Most women work until the last weeks of pregnancy and often fired when they leave for childbirth. Rana Plaza building collapse in Dhaka recently caused 1,500 deaths are tragic culmination of labor in the garment factories in Bangladesh. These cracks have appeared in the first week but Rana Plaza from all the factories have other offices in the building was deliberately ignored the warning and require workers to continue working. At the time of the incident, 3,122 people, mainly women workers in the garment factory, was present in the building. Kamrul Anam, a member of Federation of Bangladesh textile workers, said "The house collapsed like a homicide."
After the recent tragedies, a group of retailers, including H & M, Wal-Mart and Gap met with non-governmental organizations and labor rights supporters in Frankfurt (Germany) to discuss issues safety and health in 4,500 factories in Bangladesh. The US government threatened to deprive any preferences for textiles from Bangladesh. Earlier, the Walt Disney Company has stopped production in Bangladesh, in response to a series of accidents at the plant last year's fatal. These same pressures threaten the future of the textile industry of Bangladesh as the world's consumers to boycott garments "produced by blood" from Bangladesh. However, many of the actions assessment boycott Bangladesh's garment "will lead to many more victims, not died down houses that have died from famine". The work is urgently needed to improve working conditions in the factories here,