RMG worker to get Tk 5 lakh for accidental death

Apparel workers who will face unnatural death at workplaces would get at least Taka 5 lakh as compensation, State Minister for Labour and Employment Mujibul Haque Chunnu today said today.

"The workers who would be victims of accidental deaths in their workplaces at Ready-Made Garments (RMG) factories will get Taka 5 lakh from January next year," he told the launching ceremony of a project on industrial relations hotel Sonargaon here.

He added of the amount, concerned insurance companies would pay Taka 2 lakh while the rest Taka 3 lakh would be provided from a workers welfare fund, developed by the RMG entrepreneurs and the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).

The present government, Chunnu said, as part of its welfare initiatives for workers took a five-year "social dialogue" project with International Labour Organization's (ILO) technical support to improve employer-worker relations particularly in the RMG sector.

Denmark and Sweden fund the project aimed to facilitate social dialogue with particular focus on collective bargaining, dispute prevention and resolution and arbitration with special importance to the women workers, Haq said.

The announcement came as the state minister was addressing the launching of the project on "Promoting Social Dialogue and Harmonious Industrial Relations in Bangladesh Ready-Made Garment (RMG) Industry".

ILO Director General Guy Ryder spoke as the special guest while Labour and Employment Secretary Mikail Shipar gave the welcome address.

"ILO seeks to make the world's factories and workplaces safe and decent places to work," Ryder said.

The ILO chief added that the project was launched as Bangladesh made much progress in recent years in terms of workers welfare while the new initiative would contribute towards improved working conditions and labour rights in the garment sector, in line with relevant international labour standards.

ILO's Assistant Director General and Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific Ms Tomoko Nishimoto gave the opening remarks at the function.

Among others, under secretary for the Centre for Global Development and Cooperation from the Embassy of Denmark Morten Jespersen, Ambassador of the Embassy of Sweden Johan Frisell, Jatiya Sramik Jote President Shirin Akhter MP, Managing Director of Mohammadi Group Rubana Huq, Bangladesh Employers Federation President Salahuddin Kasem Khan, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association President Md Siddiqur Rahman and National Coordination Committee for Workers Education Chairman Md Abu Zafar were also spoke on the occasion.

The project's partners are the Labour and Employment ministry, Department of Labour from the government side.

Bangladesh Employers Federation, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Bangladesh Knitwear Manufactures and Exporters Association (BKMEA), and workers' organizations affiliated with the National Coordination Committee for Workers' Education (NCCWE) and IndustriAll Bangladesh Council (IBC) are other major stakeholders of the project.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)