Germany lauds BGMEA on striking a deal over Accord’s extension

BDApparelNews Desk
22 May 2019  

German ambassador to Bangladesh, Peter Fahrenholtz handing over a boquet to BGMEA President Rubana Huq at her residence during a courtesy call on May 22, 2019. Photo Courtesy: BGMEA

German ambassador to Bangladesh, Peter Fahrenholtz handing over a boquet to BGMEA President Rubana Huq at her residence during a courtesy call on May 22, 2019. Photo Courtesy: BGMEA

Germany has highly appreciated Bangladesh’s apparel manufacturers on being able to reach an agreement over extension of Accord, the European agency for factory remediation.

German ambassador to Bangladesh, Peter Fahrenholtz conveyed the appreciation personally at a courtesy call on Rubana Huq, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), at her residence in Dhaka on May 22, 2019.

Ambassador Fahrenholtz welcomed the new board of BGMEA, led by Rubana Huq after assuming office in April, and expressed his confidence on working closely to promote the apparel industry positively to his government, buyers and other stakeholders.

READ MORE: Int'l pressure pays off, Accord allowed to continue

He highly appreciated the Rubana Huq and her board’s initiative to work out an understanding with Accord, says a press release issued by BGMEA on the day of his visit.

“It is a fresh breath of air and we see possibilities of transparent and accountable dialogue,” Fahrenholtz said; confirming that he will be ready to assist the industry on positive branding and suggested ways to reach out to international stakeholders.

THE UPDATE ON ACCORD

Thanks to the international pressure, the Supreme Court has allowed Bangladesh Accord to continue operation for one more year and remediate the country’s apparel industries – putting an end to about six months of dillydallying over the agency’s extension.

The extension has been allowed for 281 working days, starting from May 8 – the date Accord and Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) inked a deal to operate jointly. According to calculation, the extension will be valid beyond February 2020.

READ MORE: Analysis - Will Accord lose its independence?

But, as Bangladesh Apparel News has it, the new terms and conditions state that Accord will not be the sole decision-making body in its work, rather it will coordinate with BGMEA in doing its work. This raise concerns as to whether Accord will remain independent.

Trade union leaders of Bangladesh has conformed of this concern and said that the new terms and conditions of the Accord deal might risk the safety of apparel industry workers.