U.S. Retailers Near Pact on Bangladesh Factory Safety [Bangladesh]

Author: Suzanne Kapner, Wall Street Journal, Published on: 27 June 2013

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Gap Inc. and other large U.S. retailers are nearing an agreement to establish a $50 million, five-year fund to improve safety conditions in Bangladesh garment factories..The $50 million fund, a critical component of the deal, is contingent on the Bangladesh government meeting certain criteria that would ensure accountability for safety improvements…One important difference between the two accords is the level of legal liability signatories would be subject to…Wal-Mart, Gap and other U.S. retailers partly resisted signing on to the European-led accord, because it comes with broad liability…By contrast, the signatories of the U.S. plan could be held legally liable in court by other signatories on two counts: if they agree to commit money to the program and then renege, or if they continue to manufacture in factories that are unsafe, according to the person familiar with the plan.

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Related companies: Abercrombie & Fitch Calvin Klein (part of PVH) Gap Hennes & Mauritz (see H&M) Inditex Macy's PVH (Phillips-Van Heusen) Sears Target Tommy Hilfiger (part of PVH) VF Corp Walmart Zara (part of Inditex)