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RMG units unable to pay Tk 5,000 minimum pay
May '10
Majority of the apparel factory owners say that, currently, they are not in a condition to raise the minimum wages of workers from the current salary of Tk 1662.50 to 5,000.

The continuous rise in production cost, clubbed with purchaser's pressure for cheaper rates, were few of the key reasons due to which, garment factory owners are unable to fulfil the worker's minimum wage demands.

During the last month, workers from several factories carried out many protest rallies to push the factory owners to execute their demands for increasing minimum pay.

An expert while detailing the current challenges of the industry said that, timely delivery was the most crucial issue. More so, although, the apparel sector was reviving out of the worst global economic crisis, they were still being pulled down by the energy crisis, which was leading to reduced production.

Worker's incompetence has also played its part in bringing down the production, he said, but then also added that, the factory owners would continue to follow the Wage Board's decision as regards wage execution.

Another expert stated that, the sector at present is not equipped to raise the minimum salary to Tk 5,000, as it would then raise the cost of production. But, at the same time, he did accept that, the salaries should be raised and that they should atleast match the seven payment wage grades laid down by the Wage Board for apparel workers.

Along with the gas and energy crunch, lies another problem and that is, the current rise in domestic yarn prices, which are following the exorbitant hike in global raw cotton prices. All this has further pressurized the apparel factory owners.

The workers' demand for a hike in their salaries was although quite reasonable, but causing harm to the factories and cordoning the roads was not the right way to press for their demands. Rather, they should deal with the factory owners on a one-on-one basis and discuss out their demands, averred another industrial expert.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India

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