Currently running in 96 factories in Bangladesh and covering a total of 183,000 workers, the International Labour Organization (ILO) much-touted Better Work Programme is all set to expand to 200 garment factories by the end of this year.
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Aimed at improving labour standards and competitiveness in global supply chains, the programme is a partnership between the ILO and the World Bank’s private sector arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), currently running operations in eight countries.
“In a short time, the Better Work Programme has gained excellent support from the Government, workers and employers alike,” stated the Country Director of ILO Srinivas Reddy, adding, “We look forward to deepening and widening this engagement in the years to come.”
The ILO Country Director said this at the Better Work Bangladesh’s first stakeholder and buyer forum, which was also attended by State Minister for Labour and Employment Md Mujibul Haque, among others. “We welcome Better Work’s approach of seeking to boost industry competitiveness while improving the lives of the workers,” underlined Haque, adding that the garment sector was the driving force of the country’s economy.
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Speaking on the occasion, Country Director of IFC Wendy Jo Werner stated, “Through Better Work, we seek to improve working conditions and competitiveness in the Bangladesh garment sector,” which she said will contribute to greater resilience to global economic trends as well as increasing demands from buyers and the customers.