AB Foods to Pay Compensation to Bangladesh Supplier Victims

Associated British Foods Plc’s Primark chain said it will pay an unspecified amount of compensation to the victims of the Bangladesh building collapse who worked for its supplier New Wave and urged other retailers to “come forward” and offer help.

Compensation will include long-term aid for children who have lost parents, financial aid for the injured and payments to parents of the deceased, the London-based company said today in a statement. Primark said its supplier shared the building with other retailers and that the retailer is “fully aware of our responsibility.”

The collapse of the eight-story Rana Plaza in Savar on April 24 killed at least 382 people in the nation’s biggest industrial disaster. Primark last week confirmed a supplier, Simple Approach, had contracted New Wave, which was on the second floor of the building on the day of the disaster, and said it was “shocked and deeply saddened” by the incident.

“We shall be reviewing our commitments constantly to ensure that they meet the needs of the victims as the tragedy continues to unfold,” the retailer said in today’s e-mailed statement. It has joined with a non-governmental organization to provide emergency food aid to families, it added.

Primark is one of at least five retailers whose products were made in the garment factory, including Loblaw Cos.’ brand Joe Fresh, U.K. budget retailer Matalan Ltd., plus-size womenswear seller Bonmarche Ltd. and Spanish department store El Corte Ingles. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. says its investigations, which are ongoing, have confirmed no authorized production took place in the facility.

“If we learn of any unauthorized production, we will take appropriate action based upon our zero-tolerance policy on unauthorized subcontracting,” spokesman Kevin Gardner said in a statement.

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