Ethical input raises Bangladesh wage

21 June 2006
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22 June 2006 | Paul Snell

Direct pressure from buyers and the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) is leading to better wages for workers in Bangladesh.

The Dhaka government has agreed to set up a "wages board" in the next three months to raise the minimum rates. It follows a visit from the ETI and its member companies, including Gap and Zara parent company Inditex.

The minimum wage of 930 taka, about £7.40 per month, has not changed since 1994. Trade associations will be required to implement the new wage as soon as it is agreed.

As reported by****(Web news, 5 June)****, two people were killed, hundreds injured and 200 factories torched in protests by garment workers over low wages and long hours.

Alan Roberts, ETI chairman, said: "The prices of commodities - such as rice, sugar and power - have gone up about 300 per cent."

A delegation met with EU trade commissioner Peter Mandelson last week to lobby against the re-introduction of import restrictions on China which last year led to extra Bangladeshi orders.


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