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SAM

Published:
2018-05-12 17:48:18 BdST

BB to form body to implement RMG factory safety project


FT ONLINE

The central bank is set to constitute a high-powered committee soon to oversee and implement the readymade garment factory remediation project financed by France, officials said.

The committee will be given necessary assistance and suggestions for the implementation of the project activities. If any problem arises during the project implementation, the committee would take decisions to resolve the problem, according to a Bangladesh Bank letter.

The proposed 11-member committee will meet at least once every three months.

The central bank is implementing the project styled 'Programme to Support Safety Retrofits and Environmental Upgrades in the Bangladesh Readymade Garment (RMG) sector project'.

The French Development Agency (Agence Française de Développement, AFD) financed the project. The AFD board authorised a loan of €50 million for the project in December 2015. It has managed to mobilise other development partners.

However, the board of European Union (EU) committed a grant of €6.3 million in November 2015, supplemented by a grant of €4.0 million sanctioned by the German government in March 2016 (implemented by KfW).

The programme will also benefit from a complementary GIZ initiative amounting to €3.0 million (in-kind TA), according to the AFD data.

The AFD fielded a mission in Dhaka from June 11 to June 15, 2017 to review the progress in its credit facility programme undertaken for the RMG sector.

Negotiations on the loan agreement had been completed and credit facility agreement had received approval from the ministry of law.

"It is now essential that the project starts as soon as possible in order to meet financial needs of the RMG sector. RMG factories are currently facing an important time-constraint since they are expected to complete at the earliest the corrective action plans (CAPs) prepared by the Accord, the Alliance and the National Tripartite Plan of Action (NTPA)," said AFD in its letter earlier.

The AFD aims to assist and support Bangladesh's RMG factories to upgrade their safety standards (on a priority basis) as well as their social and environmental performances, sources said.

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