Moving ahead with the planning for growth in the garment industry in Bangladesh, an Apparel and Safety Expo will be held in Chittagong on Thursday and Friday.
Atiqul Islam, president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said the event would be inaugurated by Tofail Ahmed, commerce minister, and a detailed road map for growth of the industry would be submitted to the minister as a part of the event.
The multi-stakeholder dialogue will be accompanied by a safety pavilion that will showcase safety equipment for local apparel manufacturers to help find quicker solutions to strengthening their factories.
This follows the first Apparel Summit held in Dhaka in December, during which discussions among the various stakeholders helped refine and improve the focus on important factors in the industry, officials of the BGMEA said.
Bangladesh has more than 4,000 garment factories, and is the second largest producer of ready-made garments in the world, after China. The $24.5 billion industry also provides jobs to more than four million workers, and BGMEA officials are projecting a growth to $50 billion by 2021.
While most of the important discussions have been held in Dhaka in recent years, after the collapse of the eight-story building that cost more than 1,100 workers their lives in 2013, Islam said the summit in Chittagong would help highlight several new issues. Chittagong is the port city from which exports are shipped. The country’s first and largest export processing zone is also located in Chittagong. Garment factories are located in both Dhaka and Chittagong.
BGMEA officials said international delegates as well as those from different segments of the industry in Bangladesh would attend the event.
With the management of the BGMEA scheduled to change next month, it appears there is a strong push to meet objectives established by the current team over the last two years, while world attention has focused on Bangladesh.