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Dhaka Tribune

Bangladesh urged to work on living wage

Update : 28 Nov 2013, 07:33 PM

Speakers at a European conference have termed living wage as human rights and urged stakeholders of developing countries, including Bangladesh, to work together for making the living wage a reality.

The conference was jointly organised by the governments of Germany and the Netherlands on November 25 and 26 in Berlin, said a statement issued here on Thursday.

Living wages as both a human right and a corporate responsibility was the theme of a two-day conference gathering government, manufacturing and labour specialists in the German capital.

A tripartite delegation from Bangladesh, composed of eleven members from the government of Bangladesh, trade bodies and trade unions, participated in the “European Conference on Living Wages.”

The delegation was headed by Atiqul Islam, President of Bangladesh Garment Manufactures & Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Hedayetullah Al Mamoon, a senior official from the Ministry of Planning. Dirk Niebel, German minister for economic cooperation and development, welcomed the delegation from Bangladesh.

The Dutch minister for foreign trade and development cooperation, Lilianne Ploumen, highlighted the conference as an important step to move forward towards the realisation and implementation of “living wages” worldwide.

A living wage meets the basic needs of a worker and his or her family. This includes food, housing, clothing and other expenses such as education and medical costs.

The conference aimed to coordinate different approaches by combining efforts to promote a living wage for a worker, which is internationally recognised as a human right.

A declaration of intent, based on the ILO convention and Universal Declaration of Human Rights, was elaborated and presented as a result of the conference.

The delegation from Bangladesh made numerous contributions and brought forward the discussions by bringing in different perspectives as well as concrete examples from the country.  

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