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24 Jun 2019

Clean Clothes Campaign

Bangladesh: Witness signatories to Accord raise concerns over 'diverging interpretations' of recently concluded MOU

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"The Bangladesh Accord continues to operate but its independence may be at risk", 13 June 2019

... we are concerned about the potential negative impact on worker safety, both short-term and long-term, of the recently concluded Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Accord and the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and the diverging interpretations that have emerged over the last few weeks...

 ...Whereas the Accord has publicly stated that, under the MOU, all...functions of the Accord will continue as before, according to the BGMEA, the MOU...:

  • Prohibits the Accord inspectorate from terminating any factory without the BGMEA’s approval;

  • Requires the Accord to accept...inspections conducted by a Bangladesh government regulatory scheme...

  • Requires BGMEA approval for the finalization of safety remediation requirements for newly inspected factories.

If BGMEA’s interpretation of the MOU’s terms prevails, the Accord will no longer be an independent body...

 ...After 13 months, the MOU calls for the Accord... to be replaced by a new entity of uncertain character. The MOU leaves virtually all significant decisions concerning the nature of this entity for future discussion... No one can assess the viability of this new entity...