Better Work to Launch Programme in Bangladesh

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Better Work Programme in Bangladesh Will Seek
to Improve Working Conditions in the Garment Sector

(Geneva)—The International Labour Organization and International Finance Corporation are pleased to announce the establishment of a Better Work programme in the ready-made garment sector in Bangladesh. As with its other country programmes, Better Work Bangladesh is a partnership with government, employers, workers, international buyers and other relevant stakeholders. “The government and industry stakeholders in Bangladesh have signalled their commitment to make decent work opportunities a reality,” says Better Work Director Dan Rees. “We look forward to engaging actively with these partners to drive demonstrable improvements in working conditions and support the long-term competitiveness of the industry.”

Building on its expertise and unique position, Better Work will provide assessments of factory compliance with national law and core international labour standards, paired with transparent public reporting on findings. The programme will also provide advisory services to factories, concentrating on building worker/management dialogue to improve working conditions and competitiveness, and engage with national partners to promote sectoral changes, including effective industrial relations. Given the current array of efforts in the country focused on improving working conditions—most notably safety and health initiatives—Better Work Bangladesh will work collaboratively with other organizations and programmes already providing high-quality services in order to avoid duplication of efforts.

The Better Work model has shown that it can bring together workers and managers to make factories more compliant and more competitive,” says Rees, who adds that “sustainable and sector-wide impacts also require strong law enforcement, labour administration and industrial relations.”

We are particularly pleased that, within the spirit of the programme partnership, the Government of Bangladesh and Better Work have agreed to link continuing implementation of the Better Work programme in the country to progress being made on a number of specific commitments, as laid out in a “Framework for Continuous Improvement.” Among the included provisions of the Framework, the Government will issue Implementing Regulations by November 2013 that determine how the newly adopted labour law amendments are put into practice. Better Work will, in cooperation with the Government, annually review progress on implementation of the Framework.

Better Work Bangladesh is funded by the governments of the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.

View our Better Work Bangladesh Q&A >>

View the ILO press release >>

View the IFC press release >>

Lejo Sibbel
Better Work, Dhaka
Tel: +880 2 9120649
Email: [email protected]