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7 Apr 2020

Annie Kelly, The Guardian

Bangladesh: Primark announces COVID-19 wage fund for garment workers; unions and suppliers left unclear about its exact terms

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“Primark announces wage fund for garment workers”, 07 April 2020

Primark … has announced it will create a fund to help pay the wages … of garment workers affected by its decision to cancel tens of millions of pounds worth of clothing orders from factories … across the world.

The pledge followed sustained criticism of the fashion retailer after data from the Bangladeshi and Garment Exporters Association…

However, the brand also stipulated that the wage compensation would be adjusted to take into account government support packages, a caveat that has caused confusion…

Rubana Huq, chairperson of the BGMEA [said] “Wage compensation should not take government loans into consideration. These brands have existing business commitments with their suppliers that are their responsibility to honour.”

Factory owners in Bangladesh also asked … whether Primark would agree to pay invoices for … the completed orders it has cancelled or for … raw materials already purchased by suppliers.