3 years ago

70,000 RMG workers lose jobs since Covid-19 hit Bangladesh

BGMEA President Dr Rubana Huq
BGMEA President Dr Rubana Huq

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Some 106 readymade garment (RMG) factories have retrenched a total of 70,000 workers since the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) President Dr Rubana Huq disclosed the information at a webinar held Wednesday night.

BRAC University's Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED) organised the webinar titled "Covid-19 Experience: Workers’ Perspective" as a part of its ongoing Rapid Survey on the RMG industry in Bangladesh.

CED-BRAC University and BRAC James P Grant School of Public Health (JPGSPH), in association with the Subir and Malini Chowdhury Centre for Bangladesh Studies at the University of California, Berkeley recently conducted a rapid survey titled "The Impacts of Covid-19 on the Lives of Workers in the Bangladesh Garment Industry".

 “Overwhelmingly 70 per cent of the surveyed workers are very worried or somewhat worried about workers in their factory who lost their job or might lose their job because of the pandemic,” said Dr Sanchita Banerjee Saxena, director of Subir and Malini Chowdhury Centre for Bangladesh Studies at the University of California while presenting the survey findings.

Citing Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments (DIFE), she said over 26,110 workers have been dismissed while 14,132 have been laid off, and 1,55,010 workers have been retrenched since the onset of Covid-19.

The Webinar was organised to disseminate the findings and policy implications of the rapid survey among the sector stakeholders.

The survey was conducted between June 30 and July 13 this year and a total of 1,038 garment workers from 225 factories participated at the survey through phone calls, organisers said.

State Minister for labour Begum Monnujan Sufian and economist Dr Wahiduddin Mahmud, among others, spoke at the virtual event.

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