The government has decided to bring all readymade garment manufacturing (RMG) and exporting industries under the Labour Ministry’s central fund from which a worker or their children will get Tk3 lakh from it in case of grave injuries or death at their workplace.
Also, in case of any injury or death outside the workplace, a worker or their heirs will get Tk2 lakh from the fund, which was solely created to provide financial support to the families of the workers.
Making the announcement, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday said the Commerce Ministry has already been given instructions to bring all garment exporters under that central fund, reports BSS.
She said this while addressing an event at her office in Dhaka where she handed over cheques for compensation among the families of 234 deceased and crippled garment workers from a fund created by the RMG sector.
The Labour Ministry’s central fund was created with 0.03% of the export volume of the industries under BGMEA and BKMEA for the welfare of the workers.
The prime minister thanked the apex bodies of garment and knitting sectors for their initiative for the workers’ welfare and said: “It's a good start. It's one step forward towards their welfare.”
She urged them to complete the work on preparing a database of the workers to make the system of giving support from the fund easy.
State Minister for Labour Mujibul Haq Chunnu and BGMEA President Siddiqur Rahman, FBCCI President Mohiuddin Ahmed, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Kamal Abdul Naser and Acting Secretary of the Labour Ministry Afroza Khan were present at the ceremony.
The prime minister urged the workers to remain careful so that no incident occurs in the industries at the instigation of outsiders.
Pointing out her government’s steps taken for welfare of working class people, Hasina said the labour law was amended for the welfare of the workers. “The government has more plans for their welfare.”
Stressing on good relations between owners and workers, she hoped that the garment factory owners would continue their stride for the workers’ welfare and give them a share of the annual profits as workers are the main instrument to keep their business operational.
She said the Directorate of Inspector was strengthened to ensure safety and security measures in the garment industries and factories.
Hasina said her administration’s measures taken in the interest of the RMG sector included raising the workers’ minimum wage to Tk5,300 from Tk3,000.
In the current fiscal year, she said, advance tax for RGM industries was reduced to 0.70% though 1% was proposed in the budget.
Income tax rate for green industries was reduced to 10% from 20% and 12% from 20% for other industries. Import tax on raw materials of prefabricated building and fire extinguishing equipment was reduced to 5%.