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Bangladesh: Accord: blessing turns burden?
Author: Refayet Ullah Mirdha, Daily Star, Bangladesh, Published on: 5 December 2018
"Accord: blessing turns burden?", 28 November 2018
The call for suspending the operations of the Accord, an inspection and remediation platform of more than 200 global clothing retailers and brands, has been getting louder as garment factory owners are being forced to spend several billion dollars to improve workplace safety. It comes despite international community's call for its continuation.
...over the years, [Accord] has turned into “a nightmare from a blessing,” putting “excessive” pressure on factories to spend billions of dollars on compliance issues even as apparel prices fall, exporters say...[The Ready-Made Garment exporters interviewed by The Daily Star] do not want any more extension for the Accord...“The factories bear all the brunt of additional expenses while the signatory brands keep on bargaining for cheaper prices. It is as if owners alone are responsible for improving the workplace conditions while the buyers will not spend a single penny for the purpose,” said [one] factory owner...
[The] research director at the Centre for Policy Dialogue, said he was in favour of a brief extension of the Accord [to] give the local inspection body, Remediation Coordination Cell (RCC)...some time before it becomes fully functional... [The] president of Sommilito Garments Shomik Federation, a workers' rights group, supports the idea... [The] Commerce Minister...said, “We don't need them anymore.”...