Global buyers and investors have urged Dhaka to allow a ‘Transition Accord’ for the readymade garment (RMG) sector until a national body to take over the factory safety responsibility becomes fully prepared. Bangladesh Investor Initiative (BII), a group of institutional investors from 12 countries, is concerned over the imminent termination of the Accord in November.
The decision for a transition monitoring committee was adopted in a meeting of various stakeholders in Dhaka in October last year.
The stakeholders included Accord representatives, global trade union federations, factory owners and the International Labour Organisation. The Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh, popularly called Accord, was signed on 15 May 2013 by retailers and importers from over 20 countries.
The meeting decided that once the committee considers the Remediation Coordination Cell to be ready based on the objective criteria agreed upon, Accord will hand over its tasks to that national regulatory body, according to Bangladesh media reports.
BII feels the imminent termination of Accord would be too costly for workers’ health and safety and to brands and their investors. It has written letters on the issue to the labour ministry and Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).