Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) has welcomed Walt Disney’s move to reinstate Bangladesh as a permitted sourcing country.
Terming this move of Walt Disney as a timely initiative, BGMEA President Faruque Hassan on Friday said it’s recognition to the all-out progress and transformation in the industry, particularly in the area of workplace safety, social standards and environmental sustainability.
The Walt Disney Company, once stopped its sourcing from Bangladesh in 2013 amid the fire and building collapse disasters. It has now considered including the country in its Permitted Sourcing Country list with ILS (International Labor Standard) audits, according to a press release of the BGMEA.
It said factories participating in the ILO’s Better Work Bangladesh program will be entitled to become a vendor, while they need to participate in the Nirapon or RMG Sustainability Council (RSC) along with specific remediation fulfillment criteria.
Over the past years, the industry has made unprecedented efforts and investment to ensure safety covering fire, electrical and structural integrity and a robust follow up of factory remediation to create a culture of safety while promoting the wellbeing of the workers.
The entire safety transformation program was supported and facilitated by the Government of Bangladesh, ILO, international brands, manufacturers and the global unions in a transparent manner.
The release said the Hong Kong-based supply chain compliance solutions provider “QIMA” ranked Bangladesh as the 2nd highest Ethical Manufacturing country in its recent report “QIMA Q1 2021 Barometer”.
The rating included performance against parameters like hygiene, health and safety, child and young labour, labour practices including forced labour, 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 testifies BGMEA’s resilience and commitment.