A group of 70 retailers, including Inditex SA (ITX) and Hennes & Mauritz AB (HMB), and trade unions have agreed to inspect their factories in Bangladesh within nine months as part of a fire and building safety accord set up after the worst industrial accident in the country’s history.
The implementation of the five-year agreement involves comprehensive inspections to identify “grave hazards and need for urgent repairs,” IndustriALL Global Union said in a statement on its website. The deal will cover all factories producing for the brands that have signed the agreement, opening them all up for safety inspections and further measures.
“This historic, legally-binding accord will effect tangible change on the ground and help make the Bangladeshi garment industry safe and sustainable,” the organization’s general secretary Jyrki Raina said in the statement.
During the past seven years, 1,800 Bangladeshi garment workers have died in factory fires and building collapses, according to IndustriALL. The Bangladeshi safety agreement was first announced in May after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh in April.
The organization has also commenced the hiring process for the chief safety inspector and executive director positions, according to the statement.
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