The ready-made garments (RMG) and the leather sectors are two key contributors in Bangladesh economy in terms of employment generation, production, export and foreign exchange earnings. The RMG sector is the first and the leather sector is the fifth major export earning source in Bangladesh. Bangladesh is now the second largest exporter in the global apparel market. In spite of such contributions, workers of these sectors suffer due to poor working conditions and constant negligence of labour rights. However, Bangladesh has the lowest wage rate amongst the top 15 garment exporters with workers earning an average of just $0.22 per hour, only 14 percent of what would be part of a living or decent wage. Similarly, the wage of tannery workers is also too low to lead their minimum decent life. The gender composition of these two sectors reveals that most of the RMG workers are female (about 85%), and a significant number of female workers are engaged in leather sector particularly in the tannery factories. Women in these two sectors are under-represented specifically in leadership positions and consequently have lesser access to basic social protection, living wages and entitlements. The project built around these concerns outlines the need for a collective intervention involving relevant stakeholders in the above mentioned sectors.
Overall Objective of the Project is to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth through the realisation of decent work agenda for garment, leather and tannery workers in Bangladesh.