We have seen the glaring gap that exists between these workers and their employers
It is no secret that, as far as export earnings are concerned, the RMG industry is far and away Bangladesh's most significant contributor, accounting for over 80% of all export earnings. As such, we must leave no stone unturned to ensure its sustained growth.
Ensuring the sustainable growth of the sector is now all the more important because, as Bangladesh inches closer to becoming a full-fledged middle-income economy and shed its tag of being a least developed country (LDC), it will also bring it a host of new challenges, deprived of the many benefits afforded to LDCs.
Experts have stated that the RMG sector in Bangladesh needs to improve the state of its human rights and work environment, in line with the United Nations Guiding Principles (UNGPs).
It bears repeating that the tremendous growth that the RMG sector has enjoyed for the better part of five decades has been built upon the backs of the workers in the sector, workers who work day in and day out to make sure that the sector continues to thrive.
Too often, we have seen the glaring gap that exists between these workers and their employers, with the workers being denied even their basic rights, working in conditions unfit for any human being, sometimes their wages also remaining unpaid.
This cannot be Bangladesh’s reality as it progresses as a nation. The entire world is noticing Bangladesh’s rise as an economy, but simultaneously, it will also rightfully face greater scrutiny for failing to treat those who make this progress possible.
If Bangladesh’s RMG sector is to continue to thrive, it must create a favourable working environment, and treat those who work in it with the dignity and respect they deserve.