The Financial Express

No announcement made on workers’ job cut: BGMEA

| Updated: June 07, 2020 10:08:26

No announcement made on workers’ job cut: BGMEA

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) on Saturday said its President Dr Rubana Haque did not announce anything about RMG workers' retrenchment from June.

In a statement amid widespread criticism over job cut announcement, the apex body of the country's apparel industry said the media did not present the matter objectively, reports UNB.

“As an organisation, we have no scope to make such an announcement. The BGMEA President expressed her deep concern over the decline in employment and possible layoffs,” reads the media statement sent by BGMEA Acting Secretary Maj (Retd) M Rafiqul Islam. 

According to BGMEA, the industry has seen a 14 per cent decline in growth in the first 10 months of the current financial year (July 2019-April 2020) which it says the highest negative growth in the industry in the last five years.

Also within the period of May 1 to May 20, the RMG industry recorded a whopping negative 55.7 per cent growth, BGMEA said.

RMG orders worth over $3.0 billion have been cancelled since March this year, according to BGMEA.

The BGMEA Secretary noted that there have been examples of factories running at 35 per cent capacity. “Even the larger factories are not able to use more than 80 per cent of their capacity.”

The data for the month of June suggests RMG factories are continuing production activities using an average capacity of 55 per cent, according to BGMEA.

Currently, BGMEA-enlisted 1,926 RMG factories are operational in the country as 346 have been shut down in the last two months.

“If the situation continues, the rest of the factories will either shut down one by one or work at low capacity," reads the statement.

The BGMEA expects both the owner and the worker will respect the labour law if any factory is forced to lay off employees.

According to McKinsey & Company data, the global garments sector will see a 30 per cent decline in sales revenue in 2020 due to COVID-19. As a result, Bangladesh will lose approximately 10 billion dollars in RMG export.

Bangladesh readymade garment industry helps earn around 83 per cent of the export earnings that the country counts annually.

Bangladesh was eyeing to earn US$ 50 billion through exporting apparel products which is now more than $32 billion every year.

The government of Bangladesh has announced a $588 million stimulus package for the RMG sector to pay wages which employs more than four million workers, mostly women.

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