Global buyers have so far canceled or suspended orders of readymade garment p products worth US$2.25 billion from Bangladesh (updated on 24 March). Many fashion brands have shut their stores in Europe and North America due to the coronavirus outbreak which leads to this order cancellation and suspension.
Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association said that more than 1089 RMG factories informed the trade body till 24 march they had received order cancellation or shipment delay notices from the buyers for export orders worth US$2.25 billion. It is affecting 1.44 million workers.
BGMEA President Rubana Huq sent a letter to the global buyers urging them not to cancel or hold orders till July so that workers could get their wages and allowances during two Eid festivals.
Italy, Spain and France and some other European countries declared nationwide lockdowns as the countries took sweeping measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Following the lockdowns, major brands in Europe, including Primark and Inditex, shut their stores in the countries and asked Bangladeshi suppliers to hold shipment of ready garments for another two to four weeks.
Already major retailers in North America like Nike, Under Armour, Lululemon Athletica, Lands End, Columbia Sportswear and Gap announced closure or reduction in store hours of all outlets in the United States and Canada.
The pandemic broke out in China in December last year and has now spread to over 150 countries. almost 50 people have tested positive for the virus while four others have died in Bangladesh till 24 March.