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328 factories are struggling to pay wage and allowance

Some 328 factories including textile and readymade garment (RMG) across the country, except for Dhaka metropolitan area, will face challenge over the payment of wages and festival allowance, according to Industrial Police (IP) who have already shared the details with the sector’s trade bodies.

Of the total factories, some almost half-are the members of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).

Some 41 are registered with the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) and 9 are affiliated with the Bangladesh Textile Mills Association (BTMA).

Jute, plastic, chemical and re-rolling mills are included and the number of non-RMG and non-textile factories is 127. All might face a struggle to pay wage and festival allowance.

IP has also categorized the factories as A- highly risky, B-medium and C and less, based on the possible risks ahead of Eid-ul-Azha.

It put some 77, 18 and 04 factories of the BGMEA, the BKMEA and the BTMA members into A category, which are in most challenging situation according to its officials.

The factories, which fall into the B category included 52 from the BGMEA members while 15 from the BKMEA and 05 from the BTMA. Some 22 BGMEA and 08 BKMEA member factories have fallen into the C category.

The units are located in six IP zones-Ashulia, Gazipur, Chattogram, Narayanganj, Mymensingh and Khulna areas.

An IP official said they are closely monitoring these factories and holding meetings with management for timely payment while avoiding any untoward situation. The IP also sent the lists to related trade bodies.

A meeting of the crisis management core committee under the labor ministry on July 08 failed to fix any deadline for paying monthly wages and festival allowance to the garment workers.

The committee has been fixing deadlines for paying wages and festival allowance since 2013.

In the meeting, a participant from law-enforcement agencies informed that some 36 garment factories did not pay the salary for the month of May and some factories might face difficulties in paying to their workers ahead of Eid festival.

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) president Dr. Rubana Huq said factories located in Ashulia and Savar have decided to pay festival allowance and monthly wages for the month of July by August 05 and August 10 respectively. She, however, claimed that all factories have paid wages for the month of May.

Huq admitted that they have received IP list of factories and the BGMEA kept some 167 factories under its close monitoring.

The BGMEA, in a circular, has requested its members to keep holidays from August 10 to August 17 in the areas of Tongi, Pubail, Boardbazar, Gazipur Sadar, Kashimpur, Konabari, Kaliakoir, Kapasia, Mouchak, Kaliganj, Sripur, Mawna, Mirerbazar and Bhaluka.

The factories in Ashulia, Kalma, Savar, Hemayetpur, Dhamrai, Jiranibazar, BKSP, Turag and Manikganj have been requested to be closed from August 11 to August 18 as Eid holiday. If any factory authority wants, it can announce holiday before the scheduled date and factories located elsewhere can announce Eid holiday adjusting with shipment date, the notification said.

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