in the news on-line, 26 November 2012

00:23:03 local time map of china CHINA

* Sportswear orders decrease:

China’s major sportswear brands are suffering from a decline in new orders during a transitional period, mainly due to intensified competition and a sagging market amid the economic slowdown, market analysts said Sunday.

Domestic sportswear producer Xtep International Holdings announced over the weekend that the advance orders it received for the second quarter of 2013 decreased by about 15 to 20 percent year-on-year.
“After a decade of expansion, the sportswear industry is suffering rising inventories, falling orders, and a shrinking number of stores,” Zhang Qing, founder and CEO of Beijing Key Solution Sports Consulting Co, told the Global Times Sunday.

Many brands are in transition, trying to upgrade technologies and cut operational costs, and the difficult period is estimated to last for two to three years as the sportswear industry reshuffles, said Zhang.
Xstep was not the only Chinese sportswear company to suffer from declining orders. Its domestic competitor Anta Sports Products disclosed November 16 that it also received 15 to 25 percent fewer new orders for the second quarter of next year compared with a year earlier. read more.

00:23:03 local time map of philippines PHIIPPINES

* Program empowering Lumban cooperative:

The Lumban Embroidery Association Multi-Purpose Cooperative (LEAMPC) will benefit from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)’s Shared Services Facility (SSF) Program.
Early next year, the multi-purpose cooperative is expected to receive seven imported high speed sewing machines costing about P70,000 each or a total of P490,000.
The said machines are expected to strengthen the cooperative’s production capacity and bring more efficiency.
Lumban’s embroidery industry is considered as one of the priority industry clusters identified by DTI. read more.

23:23:03 local time map of laos LAOS

* Garment sector eyes 60,000 workers by 2015:

The Laos clothing manufacturing industry is planning a major publicity campaign to attract more employees, aiming to double its workforce to 60,000 by 2015.

The move comes from the Association of the Lao Garment Industry, whose training arm, the Garment Skills Development Centre (GSC), will release detailed information of the supposed benefits of taking jobs in the sector.
By international standards, these are low, but Laos is poor – 2011 World Bank data reported its annual gross national income at US$1,130 per capita.

“In January 2012 the minimum wage rose from LAK348,000 (US$43.50) to LAK626,000 (US$77) per month and factories pay additional bonuses, over time,” Wilma Driessler, management advisor of GSC, told just-style.
“A garment worker can make US$100-250 per month including food and accommodation,” she said, adding: “Other sectors such as construction and mining may pay better, but workers have…heavier work and…take more risks.”

The Lao garment industry has been grappling with long-term labour shortages.
“Order books are full and delivery in time is mandatory. But to accept more orders from potential and existing buyers the sector needs more workers,” said Driessler. “The demand from abroad is increasing and the factories would love to accept new orders.”
The industry wants to export US$500m worth of garments annually by 2015.
to read.

23:23:03 local time map of thailand THAILAND

 * Thai govt to help SME textile businesses cope wage rise:

Following the Cabinet’s move to increase the nation-wide daily minimum wage to Bt 300 from January 1, 2013, the Thailand Government has stepped forward to help the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), including textile and garment businesses, to cope with the sharp rise in the production costs.
The hike would result in almost two-fold rise in wages in some of the provinces like Phayao, where the minimum wage now prevails at Bt 159 per day.

The Thailand Government has now set up a committee, under leadership of Deputy Prime Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong, to suggest remedial measures for entrepreneurs, impacted by the hike, as suggested by the Labour Ministry and Federation of Thai Industries (FTI). read more.

00:23:03 local time map of malaysia MALAYSIA

* Employers Urged Not To Squeeze The Life Out Of Employees:

Employers have been urged not to force their employees to work excessive long hours and outside job tasks which contravene the Employment Act 1955.

Human Resource Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said under the act, employees were required to work for eight hours per day and an additional four hours would be considered an overtime.

“Employers should not squeeze the life of their employees. Usually, employees are willing to work longer hours to earn more to feed their families Treat them fairly,” he said when met at an international research seminar on Tamil education here.
read more.

22:23:03 local time map of bangla_desh BANGLA DESH

* ASHULIA-SAVAR GARMENT FACTORY FIRE:

* Factory Fire Kills More Than 100 People in Bangladesh:

Firefighters tried to control a fire at a garment factory in Savar, Bangladesh, on Saturday. Hasan Raza/Associated Press

More than 100 people died Saturday and Sunday in a fire at a garment factory outside Dhaka, Bangladesh, in one of the worst industrial tragedies in that country.

It took firefighters more than 17 hours to put out the blaze at the factory, Tazreen Fashions, after it started Saturday evening, a retired fire official said by telephone from Dhaka, Bangladesh’s capital. At least 111 people were killed and scores of workers were taken to hospitals with burns and smoke inhalation injuries.

“The main difficulty was to put out the fire; the sufficient approach road was not there,” said the retired official, Salim Nawaj Bhuiyan, who now runs a fire safety company in Dhaka. “The fire service had to take great trouble to approach the factory.”

Bangladesh’s garment industry, the second largest exporter of clothing after China, has a notoriously poor record of fire safety. Since 2006, more than 500 Bangladeshi workers have died in garment factory fires, according to Clean Clothes Campaign, an anti-sweatshop advocacy group based in Amsterdam. Experts say many of the fires could have been easily avoided if the factories had taken the right precautions. Many factories are in cramped neighborhoods, have too few fire escapes and widely flout safety measures. The industry employs more than three million workers in Bangladesh, mostly women.

Activists say that global clothing brands need to take responsibility for working conditions in Bangladeshi factories that produce the clothes that they sell.

“These brands have known for years that many of the factories they choose to work with are death traps,” Ineke Zeldenrust, the international coordinator for Clean Clothes Campaign, said in a statement. “Their failure to take action amounts to criminal negligence.”

The fire at the Tazreen factory in Savar, northwest of Dhaka, started in a warehouse on the ground floor and quickly spread up the building, which Reuters reported is nine stories high. The two-year-old factory employed about 1,500 workers and had sales of $35 million a year, according to information on the company’s Web site. It made T-shirts, polo shirts and fleece jackets.

Most of the workers who died were on the first and second floors and were killed, fire officials said, because there were not enough exits for them to get out. read more.

* Unclaimed bodies to be kept at DMCH:

The unclaimed bodies of the victims of the devastating fire that swept through a garment factory in the Ashulia have been kept at Dhaka Medical College Hospital morgue, although it was earlier decided that Anjuman Mofidul Islam would be given custody of those.

The worst-ever factory blaze in Bangladesh broke out on the ground floor of the multi-storied Tazreen Fashions Limited of Tuba Group in Savar’s Nischintapur around 7:30pm on Saturday and claimed lives of at least 110 people.

Ten fire-fighting units put out the flames after more than five hours of frantic efforts but the cause of the fire was yet to be known. The administration, police and Fire Brigade have formed three separate committees to investigate the reason.

Assistant Superintendent of Police Moshiuddoula had told bdnews24.com at the scene that Anjuman Mufidul Islam had been given custody of 58 bodies as no-one came to claim them. read more.

* Tazreen Fashions was ‘highly risky’:

Importers were not satisfied with Tazreen Fashions Limited, the readymade garment factory in Ashulia, where a fire killed at least 110 of its workers, and ranked its working condition as ‘highly risky’

A document posted on the factory’s website shows the main importer of the factory, Walmart, listed it, a sister concern of Tuba Group, in the ‘Orange’ category, just below ‘Red,’ which prohibits signing of any deal with it.

It surfaced in the coverage of the influential US newspaper The New York Times on the worst ever factory fire in Bangladesh.

According to The New York Times, an “ethical sourcing” official for the Walmart flagged “violations and/or conditions which were deemed to be high risk” at the Ashulia factory on May 16, 2011. read more.

* Deadly Ashulia fire toll reaches 110:

A devastating fire that swept through a garment factory in the Ashulia industrial belt near capital Dhaka on Saturday has left at least 110 people dead.

The worst ever factory blaze in Bangladesh broke out on the ground floor of the multi-storied Tazreen Fashions Limited around 7:30pm in Savar’s Nischintapur, officials said.
Ten fire-fighting units tamed the flames after over four hours of frantic efforts but what caused the fire remains unknown.

Workers who managed to escape the fire by jumping from windows alleged authorities prevented them leaving the factory after the fire alarm went off saying the alarm was not working properly, only to raise the death counts.
Evidence suggests the factory was not compliant and importers, including its major buyer Wal-Mart, were not satisfied with the factory’s working condition. In May, 2011, Wal-Mart in its evaluation ranked it under ‘Orange’ category. read more.

* Govt assistance for Ctg, Ashulia victims:

Disaster Management and Relief Ministry on Sunday allocated Tk 28 lakh for the victims of the fire incident at a RMG factory at Ashulia in Savar and girder collapse of an under-construction flyover in Chittagong city.

Families of each deceased in the fire incident will get Tk 20,000, while each injured Tk 5,000, said a PID handout.
Families of each deceased will receive Tk 20,000 in the Chittagong incident and each injured Tk 5,000.
About 124 people were killed and many others injured in the two incidents on Saturday night.  to read.

* Ashulia fire death toll now 111, thousands take to streets:

Several thousand garment workers are staging a rowdy protest in Ashulia on Monday demanding punishment of those responsible for Saturday’s fire that claimed the lives of 111 people.

Vehicular movement on the Dhaka-Tangail highway remains suspended since the morning following their demonstration, witnesses said.
SM Badrul Alam, officer-in-charge of Ashulia Police Station, on Monday said the Tazreen Fashion Ltd fire death toll reached to 111.

In the wake of the situation most of the garment units in Ashulia zone have been declared closed for Monday to avoid any untoward incident, police sources said.
Witnesses said thousands of workers of the fire-ravaged Tazreen Fashion and its nearby factories took to the streets around 9:30am.

They also blocked roads in Jamgarah, Narsinghapur, Nischintapur and Jirabo areas, halting transport movement, an official of Tazreen Fashion Ltd said.
Additional contingent of police have been deployed in and around the area to avert any untoward incident.

The workers on Monday said they wanted to know the exact death toll in the fire that raged through the garment factory at Nischintapur near Dhaka Export Processing Zone in Ashulia on Saturday evening. read more.

* RMG workers block roads in Ashulia:

Workers of fire-damaged Tazreen Fashion and other nearby garment factories blocked different roads in Ashulia Monday morning demanding punishment of those responsible for Saturday evening fire that claimed lives of 109 people.

Thousands of workers took the streets around 9:30am and blocked roads in Jamgarah, Narsinghapur, Nischintapur and Jirabo halting transport movement, an official of Tazreen Fashion said.
The death toll could rise as several people went missing.

The workers on Monday said they want to know the exact figure of the death toll in the fire that raged through the garment factory at Nischintapur near Dhaka Export Processing Zone in Ashulia on Saturday evening.
The fire came under control around 5:55am Sunday. read more.

* Desperate search for Ashulia fire victims:

Akram Hossain searched every corner of the fire-devastated factory of Tazreen Fashions Ltd in Ashulia for his wife Lipi Begum.

“Oh, god where do I search her, now,” said a helpless Akram.
It was the third time since Sunday morning that 30-year-old Akram had come to the factory to find the body of his beloved wife who was also a victim of the Saturday’s fire.

The fire, which broke out at the ground floor of the factory Saturday evening and continued till Sunday dawn, cost the lives of at least 109 workers and left over hundred injured– worst ever in the history of $20 billion export-earner clothing industry.
Of the dead, 54 bodies, which could not be identified and remained unclaimed, were handed over to the voluntary organisation Anjuman Mofidul Islam.

Akram moved around the ashes of fabrics, burned flesh, debris of ceramic tiles, sewing machines, charred electric wires and examined everything repetitively in the hope of finding his wife, whom he had married two and half years ago.
read more.

* Fire hits second Bangladesh garment factory:

Blaze engulfs 12-storey building just two days after at least 110 textile workers perish in similar incident in Dhaka.
A fire that broke out in a 12-storey building housing four different garment factories in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, has been almost brought under control, police say.There were no reports of deaths in Monday’s blaze in the suburb of Uttara, but eight workers were injured due to heavy smoke, Abu Nayeem Mohammad Shahidullah, fire brigade director-general, told Reuters news agency.

The fire occurred just days after a similar incident killed at least 110 textile workers in a different facility in the city. read and see more (video).

* UTTARA GARMENT FACTORY FIRE:

* Fire again at Uttara factory:

A fire broke out at a garment factory at Dakshin Khan in the capital’s Uttara Monday morning.

The fire that broke out at a garment factory at Dakshin Khan in the capital’s Uttara Monday morning has been brought under control.

No casualty was reported till 11:00am when the report was filed.
The fire originated at the 12-storey building of Euro-Bangla Garment at Mollartek around 10:05am, fire service sources said.
Thirteen firefighting units rushed to the spot and were trying to control the blaze.

to read.  & read more. & read more.
   

* Another apparel factory catches fire at Dakhsin Khan:

Two days after a massive fire in a garment factory at Ashulia, another apparel factory caught fire at Mollartek under Dakhsin Khan thana in the city on Monday morning.

Fire service sources said the fire broke at about 10:05 am on the first and second floors of a 12-storey building that houses the RMG unit ‘Euro Bangla Garments’.
On information, 13 fire fighting units rushed to the spot and were trying to extinguish the fire till filing of the report at 11.00 am.

No casualty was reported, but many workers of the factory remained trapped in the inferno, fire service sources said. read more.

* Bangladesh: agreement on fire safety in textiles required:

More than 100 workers died and as many were injured in a horrific fire at the Tazreen Fashion garment factory near Dhaka on 24 November. IndustriALL Global Union calls for a government and union agreement on fire and building safety in Bangladesh.

The fire broke out in the evening ripping through the multi-floor garment factory on the outskirts of Dhaka in Bangladesh, burning the factory to the ground. Female workers were cut off as piles of fabric that filled corridors ignited. Early reports indicate that second and third floors were locked forcing many workers to leap to their death from upper floors. The reported 124 deaths and over 150 injuries are expected to rise.

Profoundly shocked by the incident, IndustriALL Global Union conveys its condolences to the families of the victims and its solidarity to the injured workers. The massive fire disaster did not only kill more than 100 workers but also killed the future of their families, their dreams and their hopes.

Fire disasters, especially in the garment sector, are on the rise in many countries of the Asia Pacific Region. The Bangladeshi government reports that 414 apparel workers died in fires between 2006 and 2009. In 2010, two large fires resulted in the deaths of 50 Bangladeshi workers. More than 300 workers were killed in devastating factory fires at a garment factory in Karachi and a shoe factory in Lahore, Pakistan on 11 September 2012.

Together with the unions in the Asia Pacific region, IndustriALL Global Union will put pressure on governments to properly enforce national laws on health and safety issues in general and on fire safety in particular. IndustriALL Global Union demands that:

  • Governments must play a critical role in long-term, sustainable change by updating laws and implementing regulations, improving factory inspections, and establishing the tripartite framework necessary for appropriate relations between employer and labour stakeholders.
  • Factory owners and operators must commit to facilitate and support a continuing cycle of safety management based on ongoing dialogue between management and trade unions or worker elected representatives.
  • Brand owners and retailers must verify that the factories they use comply with applicable safety standards and must ensure that their pricing and sourcing practices make this feasible.read more.

* Labor Rights Group Calls on Brands to Join Fire Safety Program Following Deadly Fire at Factory Supplying US and European Brands:

Death Toll at Walmart Supplier is Highest in Bangladesh Garment Industry to Date

More than one hundred workers died as a result of the garment factory fire that started on Saturday evening at Tazreen Fashions, owned by Tuba Group. Together with our partners in Bangladesh and around the world, ILRF is calling for an independent and transparent investigation into the causes of the fire; full and fair compensation to be paid to injured workers and to the families of the deceased; and effective action from all parties involved to prevent future tragedies.

In addition to finding evidence that the factory produced Walmart’s Faded Glory brand, researchers found over a dozen other brand logos on clothing and documents in the factory, including Ace, C&A, Dickies, Fashion Basics, Sean Combs Co.’s Enyce brand, Edinburgh Woollen Mill’s brands P.G. field and Country Rose, Hippo, Infinity Woman, Karl Rieker GMBH & Co., Kebo Raw, Kik, Piaza Italia, Soffe, and True Desire.

For several years, the International Labor Rights Forum has been tracking and responding to factory fires in Bangladesh’s garment industry. This is the most deadly factory fire in the history of the apparel industry in Bangladesh, which is the world’s second largest apparel exporter after China. Export data has indicated that Walmart is the second largest buyer of garments from Bangladesh, after H&M.
read more.

21:53:03 local time map of india INDIA

* ‘Dhaka fire tragedy should serve asan eye-opener to garment factories’:

‘Several units functioning in sheds and godowns’

The fire tragedy in a garment factory near Dhaka in Bangladesh, which claimed at least 109 lives, should serve as an “eye-opener” to the garment factories in the State, according to a senior official of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services.

“Several garment factories in the State function from sheds, godowns and ground plus first floor structures, where cloth and other materials, which are combustible and inflammable, are stored. Proper fire protection steps should be in place,” the official told The Hindu.

Though owners of garment factories housed in high-rise buildings approach the Fire and Emergency Services Department for having fire safety norms in place, the garment units housed in smaller places do not seek any guidance. “If they come to us, we will provide them with whatever guidance that is necessary,” said the official, who did not wish to be named.

However, the official made it clear that the owners of the garment factories should themselves take up the responsibility to ensure that a proper fire safety system is in place in their units.
Apart from fire safety system, the owners should also ensure that proper and safe working atmosphere and sanitation is provided to the workers.

Staff shortage
Meanwhile, Director of Fire and Emergency Services Department B.G. Chengappa said that the owners of the garment factories should take up the responsibility of fire safety in their units.
The department is facing a shortage of staff, he said. read more.

 * National Peoples’ Tribunal  for  Living Wages and Decent Working Conditions for Garment workers:

* Garment workers exploited, denied basic human and labour rights: tribunal:


The report of the ‘National people’s tribunal on living wage for garment workers’ has recommended strengthening of the Labour Department so that it can enforce labour laws, and monitor and tackle industrial disputes.

The verdict was based on testimonies of 250 people heard over four days

Workers in the garment industry here are exploited and denied basic human and labour rights, the ‘National people’s tribunal on living wage for garment workers’ observed in its verdict on Sunday.

Over four days, testimonies of 250 garment workers were recorded. A common thread that ran through these stories were tales of labour and human rights violations ranging from unfair wages and work hours to sexual abuse and inhuman work conditions.
These put together, the jury observed in a 37-page report released here, created conditions which amounted to “bonded and forced labour practices”. The report added that there has been an “effective undermining” of the freedom of association of workers.
The jury was headed by Gianni Tognioni, secretary-general of the Permanent People’s Tribunal, Italy.

The verdict dealt with ‘living wage’, which the jury said, should be implemented as a human right. “The components which are essential for the calculation of a living wage must not only include adequate food to the worker and her/his family, but all elements to live a life of dignity, which includes housing, medical care and education for children, rest and leisure, social and cultural opportunities,” the jury observed.

Noting that resources allocated to labour ministries were “largely insufficient”, the tribunal said that the Labour Department must be strengthened to enable it to enforce labour laws, and monitor and tackle industrial disputes. read more.

* Garment industry wage smust ensure life of dignity:

A tribunal on Sunday called for effective implementation of living wages in garment industry.

Delivering its verdict after a two-day hearing, the National People’s Tribunal for Living Wages and Decent Working Conditions for Garment Workers said living wage was a human right. The components essential for calculating it must not only include adequate food to the worker and her or his family, but also all the elements required to live a life of dignity, namely, housing, medical care and education for children, rest and leisure time, including social and cultural opportunities, it said.

Over 250 garment workers from Gurgaon, Tirupur and Bangalore had given evidence during the hearing.
(…)
The tribunal also referred to the phenomenon of ‘wage theft’ prevalent in the industry in the form of non-payment for overtime wages, illegal deduction, late payment, lesser wages to women than men, wages not based on skills and recommendations.

The hearing underlined that textile brands too should accept their responsibility in the violation of the basic rights of workers, the myth of surprise inspections by their representatives, the need for skill training to stabilize the workforce, and their own role in the setting of impossibly high production targets. read more.

OTHER NEWS:

* Tamil Nadu spinners moving to Maharashtra and Gujarat:

With no no respite from power outages ranging from 12 to 14 hours in Tamil Nadu, barring Chennai, a large number of textile mills are planning to shift their operatrions to states like Maharashtra or Gujarat, which have textile-friendly policy in existence and also availability of power.

Since addition of spindlage or increasing the production capacity remained dormant for the last three years due to power problem, some spinning mill owners, both small and large, recently met and discussed the issue of shifting to those states where power, though little costly and cotton, the major raw material, were available in plenty.

According to highly placed sources in Southern India Mills’ Association (SIMA), despite appeals made by it and other industry captains, power situation remained the same for the last three years, putting the textile industry in dolldrums in Tamil Nadu particularly when the industry was heading toward a revival path.
Normally the textile mills in Tamil Nadu, which has 23 Million spindles, added seven to eight lakh spindles annually, with Coimbatore contributing 40 per cent.
read more. & read more.
 

* Malwa set to become textiles hub of South-East Asia: Minister:

The Malwa area in Punjab is all set to become a new textiles hub in the Asian region, Industry and Commerce Minister Anil Joshi said today.

He made the observation while reviewing the progress of 1,485 crore textile unit that is coming up on 350 acres in district Muktsar.

Joshi said that under the new textiles policy of Punjab, a Textile Park having composite Textile Processing units from Cotton to Garment would be setup with minimum Fixed Capital Investment of Rs 250 crore. The districts of Bathinda, Mansa, Faridkot, Ferozepur, Mukatsar, Sangrur, Barnala, Taran Taran and Amritsar are covered under the policy. read more.

21:53:03 local time map of sri_lanka SRI LANKA

* Implement LLRC proposals- urge garment exporters:

Sri Lanka’s apparel industry, struggling against an economic crisis that has hit its main buyer – Europe -, is urging the government to implement recommendations of Sri Lanka’s post-war reconciliation commission in a bid to regain GSP concessions from the European Union (EU).

This comes in the wake of a leadership change within the apparel exporters’ body that took place last Monday during its AGM.
Newly appointed Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association Chairman Yohan Lawrence speaking with the Business Times said they were hoping to regain the GSP plus concessions as the “size of the market that we have lost – it is not possible to replace it overnight.”
He hoped to engage with the government to ascertain whether they intend pursuing its commitments to the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) recommendations.

However, to date there has been no move by the government of re-applying for GSP concessions from the European Union (EU), he said.
Sri Lanka lost trade concessions to the EU in 2010 following allegations of human rights violations during the war and lack of adherence to labour rights. read more.

* GSP continues to haunt Sri Lanka:

While the debate over GSP Plus concessions eased last year, it has erupted once again with falling exports and rising costs of production.

At this week’s annual meeting of the Exporters Association, the chairman echoed the repeated sentiments of the outgoing chief (Rohan Abeykoon) that the loss of GSP Plus concessions two years ago was gradually affecting the industry.
Two major issues are confronting the garments industry which is not so sure of reaching the government set-target of US$5 billion in revenue by 2015.

These are – being uncompetitive in the international market and big buyers looking at cheaper manufacturing locations; and the economic crisis hitting Europe forcing buyers to be cost conscious.
In the nine months to September 2012, exports fell by 7 percent compared to the same period last year. Worst hit was Europe with a drop of 10 per cent and the US (drop of nearly 6 per cent). Thus rather that reflecting year on year growth, the industry is showing negative growth. read more. & read more.
 

* Apparel sector aims at $5b target:

The apparel sector will aggressively pursue the target of $ 5 b set to be achieved by 2015. “We have studied the Turkey model which we believe is a good system to benchmark given the level of trade they enjoy inspite of costs thrice as high as prevalent here,” Apparel Exporters Association, Outgoing Chairman Rohan Abeykoon said.

They too have an industry based on a higher percentage of small to medium units operating in the industry supported by large front end business’ and use their services to promote the business in that country, he said.A valuable business model was looked at by the industry to begin 100 new SME units of 100 machines only with new entrants, but it appears that this idea has not garnered official sanction.

This is a step in the right direction to get the critical mass of manufacturers in the country and also to open new entrepreneurship with fresh thinking, energy and drive, he said at the Apparel Exporters Association AGM last week in Colombo.
“We are drawn into a model which seems to be based on an uneven playing field and thereby its sustainability becomes questionable. The field consists of competing manufacturers who thrive on low cost or depend on local subsidies and free trade agreements.” read more.

21:23:03 local time map of pakistan PAKISTAN

* Textile exporters concern:

Textile exporters have expressed concern over the indifferent attitude of Trade Development Authority (TDAP) towards the implementation of EU notification allowing duty free access to 75 tariff lines.
Chairman, Towel Manufacturers Association of Pakistan (TMA), Mehtabuddin Chawla, in a statement, said country’s textile exporters to EU were very happy on belated implementation of EU grant of Autonomous Trade Preferences (ATP) to Pakistan but due to lack of homework by TDAP in connection with the issuance of Certificate of Origin, in compliance with ATP requirements, exporters are perturbed over the attitude of TDAP.

It seems that the Authority is trying to wash out the hectic efforts and hard work done by Ministry of Commerce, WTO wing at Brussels and concerned EU countries consulates. read more.

* Gas supply rationed to textile mills:

 Gas quota will be allocated to Faisalabad’s textile industry, already in shambles due to gas suspensions. However, the catch is that the quota will be on a trial-basis for one week where gas will be opened for one industrial cluster and if successful, quotas will be given permanently to all the units in the region.

The assurance was given by Dr Asim Hussain, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Petroleum and Natural Resources in a meeting with delegation of Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA).

The gas suspensions for 180 days in the financial year 2011-12 resulted in a 50% setback in production capacity of the sector. The textile industry had witnessed a 40% decline in textile exports in terms of volume during the last year, mainly due to gas outages in the country rendering production units to inactive. read more.

* Allocation of gas quota for textile sector assured:

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain has assured that specific gas quota would be allocated to the export oriented and foreign exchange earning textile sector of Faisalabad.

In a meeting here on Thursday, Chairman Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA) Asghar Ali said that the PTEA delegation met Hussain, who also assured that the gas quota would be allocated for one week on a trial basis for Khurarianwala industrial cluster and later it would be implemented in all regions.

Ali said that a Pakistan Textile Exporters Association delegation headed by him held talks with Hussain in Lahore on gas outages in the region. The delegation briefed the advisor on the rapidly eroding competitiveness of the textile industry due to short supply of gas and that both investment and industry viability are at stake.

“Gas supply cuts for 180 days in FY12 have affected 50 percent capacity of the textile industry,” he said.
“The textile mills were working on thin margins and could not afford to continue production on alternative fuel.” read more.

* APTMA showcases Pak textile sector to D-8 delegates:

Chairman All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Ahsan Bashir made presentation on investment climate of Pakistan in textile sector to the D-8 delegates from Turkey, Malaysia, Iran, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Egypt the other day.

The Government of Pakistan had invited Chairman APTMA to present the textile industry investment scenario to the Business Conference of D-8 delegates and apprise them of the investment potential in textile industry of Pakistan. Chairman APTMA elaborated the visiting delegates that the textile industry of Pakistan possesses the potential of growing to $25 billion by 2015 with timely investment to each link of textile value chain. read more.

 

map of Asia

* In the Menu under “National Peoples’ Tribunal” you can find: an overview of articles about the Indian National Peoples’ Tribunal for Living Wages and Decent Working Conditions

HEADLINES TODAY:

CHINA
* Sportswear orders decrease

PHIIPPINES
* Program empowering Lumban cooperative

LAOS
* Garment sector eyes 60,000 workers by 2015

THAILAND
* Thai govt to help SME textile businesses cope wage rise

MALAYSIA
* Employers Urged Not To Squeeze The Life Out Of Employees

BANGLA DESH
* ASHULIA-SAVAR GARMENT FACTORY FIRE:
* Factory Fire Kills More Than 100 People in Bangladesh
* Unclaimed bodies to be kept at DMCH
* Tazreen Fashions was ‘highly risky’
* Deadly Ashulia fire toll reaches 110
* Govt assistance for Ctg, Ashulia victims
* Ashulia fire death toll now 111, thousands take to streets
* Desperate search for Ashulia fire victims
* RMG workers block roads in Ashulia
* Fire hits second Bangladesh garment factory
* UTTARA GARMENT FACTORY FIRE:
* Fire again at Uttara factory
* Another apparel factory catches fire at Dakhsin Khan
* Bangladesh: agreement on fire safety in textiles required
* Labor Rights Group Calls on Brands to Join Fire Safety Program Following Deadly Fire at Factory Supplying US and European Brands

INDIA
* ‘Dhaka fire tragedy should serve asan eye-opener to garment factories’
* National Peoples’ Tribunal for Living Wages and Decent Working Conditions for Garment workers:
* Garment workers exploited, denied basic human and labour rights: tribunal
* Garment industry wage smust ensure life of dignity
OTHER NEWS:
* Tamil Nadu spinners moving to Maharashtra and Gujarat
* Malwa set to become textiles hub of South-East Asia: Minister

SRI LANKA
* Implement LLRC proposals- urge garment exporters
* GSP continues to haunt Sri Lanka
* Apparel sector aims at $5b target

PAKISTAN
* Textile exporters concern
* Gas supply rationed to textile mills
* Allocation of gas quota for textile sector assured
* APTMA showcases Pak textile sector to D-8 delegates

latest tweets (& news)

Convention on the Rights of the Child
Universal Declaration of Human Rights

I wonder who they are
The men who really run this land
And I wonder why they run it
With such a thoughtless hand

What are their names
And on what streets do they live
I'd like to ride right over
This afternoon and give
Them a piece of my mind
About peace for mankind
Peace is not an awful lot to ask
    David Crosby

I wonder who they are
The people who are buying these clothes
I'd like to know what they've paid for it
How much the makers have paid for this
Fairer income is not an awful lot to ask
Better working conditions is not an awful lot to ask
    A. Searcher

For more and other (labour) news you can follow on twitter: @asearcher2