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10 Mar 2023

Claire Jenns, JustStyle

Bangladesh: ETI report reveals number of women in RMG sector, previously 80% of workforce, is declining and departures are voluntary

"Declining number of women in Bangladesh ready-made-garment industry – report", 10 March 2023

A new study by the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) finds that women in Bangladesh no longer comprise 80% of the ready-made-garment (RMG) industry.


The report estimates that women now comprise approximately 54% of the industry, stating that “These changes have significant implications for women’s economic empowerment, as well as the well-being of their families and communities.”


It looked at entry into and exit from the RMG industry, the reasons for entry and exit by women workers in the RMG sector, and the implications of these changes for women’s participation in the RMG sector.

337 factories, 370 current women garment workers, 285 former women garment workers, and 183 potential women workers were surveyed. This was alongside nine focus groups with 89 participants and 16 key informant interviews with key stakeholders, including buyers and suppliers.