Small and medium enterprises in Myanmar's garment sector are set to get a 2.8 million euros boost from the European Union. The cash infusion will support the second phase of a development initiative that aims to make the “Made in Myanmar” industry more competitive by building environmental awareness, sustainability and social protections for the workers.
The next phase of the EU-funded SMEs for environmental Accountability, Responsibility and Transparency (SMART) project will start next week, Project Director Simone Lehmann said at a press conference in Yangon.
She said the programme will provide “technical support and capacity building” through workshops engaging dozens of factory employers.
“We will not be focusing on labour disputes in the garment sector but we will only focus on developing the sector and providing professional support for MGMA (the Myanmar Garment Manufactures Association),” she said.
The next phase of the SMART project is slated for the next 48 months. The scheme hopes to boost productivity and create over 300,000 job opportunities for low-skilled workers.
U Myint Soe, chairperson of the MGMA, said during the first phase of the SMART Myanmar project, from 2013 to 2015, the Myanmar garment sector had doubled its exports.
The first SMART Myanmar project spent 2 million euros and worked with 10 different garment factories.
SMART Myanmar actively promotes and supports the sustainable production of garments “Made in Myanmar” striving to increase the international competitiveness of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in this sector.
Working closely with companies and business support organizations located in Myanmar, the SMART project aims to build capacity and increase skills and knowledge in local partner organizations, facilitating the development of marketing and export strategies for the garment sector. (SH)
Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India