Interview with Mr Syed Nurul Islam

Face2Face
Mr Syed Nurul Islam
Mr Syed Nurul Islam
Chairman
Well Group
Well Group

As a major exporter in the garment sector, how do you figure out its country wise growth? Which countries shall grow more in this sector? What would be deciding factors for this growth?

I think Bangladesh will be the global hub for the garments supply. Low cost labor will be the deciding factor for this growth.

The textile quotas under the Multi-Fiber Arrangement of January 2005 have been moderate in Bangladesh and the industry is divided on their impact. While industry analysts say Bangladesh’s garment and textile manufacturers will have to face steep competition from countries such as India, Pakistan, China and Thailand as a result of new policies, the textile companies see no impact on their business.

Bangladesh’s textile industry can be divided into three main categories: public sector; handloom sector; and the organized private sector. The private sector is the fastest growing sector in the country. The handloom industry provides employment for a large segment of the population of Bangladesh and supplies a large portion of the fabric required by the local market. About 20 percent of existing mills in Bangladesh are large-scale mills, roughly 30 percent are medium-scale mills, and the remaining 50 percent are small-scale mills. The number of spinning mills in the country is increasing day-by-day.

Recently, the announcement of 1 percent Tax at Source was made by Finance Minister, Mr Muhith, who raised the tax from 0.25 to 1 percent. How would you express your stance on this tax rise?

I think this is not a bad decision. Our garment sector enjoyed tax benefit for a long period of time. Now is the time for paying the tax to take part in the National GDP growth.

Would you like to enlist a few more concerns impaling your industry, besides this tax increase?

We have to stop politically motivated general strikes, and need major Improvement of infrastructure as well as reform of financial system.

The World Bank has approved a credit of $79 million to Bangladesh for its Skills and Training Enhancement Project (STEP). How will this benefit the garment industry in particular, in years to come?

Skill developing of our major work force is one of the key factors for garment industry. This project will assist Bangladesh in further developing human capital resources by strengthening public and private training institutions that improve the skill set and employability of the workforce. By greater participation of women and young people in to this project will help the poverty elevation in the long run.

What all are your views on CSR and Green revolution?

CSR practice can be put into operation in many ways

• Work place codes to protect workers rights for fair hours of work, pay, vacation and sick leave, to increase diversity and opportunity, to avoid discrimination and to ensure safe working premises.

• Improved management systems for instance through increased stakeholder engagement, shared decision making and employee involvement.

Green Revolution is required for this thrust sector for our safe future generation

• Use of sustainable raw materials, products, technology and energy such as crops that employ no pesticides or have reduced need for water, use of materials made from renewable resources with ‘alternative-green’ substituted chemicals.

• Transportation and waste management for instance, reducing waste by improved design, or choosing materials that can be recycled or are biodegradable.

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Published on: 12/07/2010

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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