Bangladesh revises up RMG workers’ minimum wage to Tk 8,000

Bangla Tribune Report
Published : 17:58, Sep 13, 2018 | Updated : 00:27, Sep 14, 2018

The ready-made garment industry accounts for over 80 percent of Bangladesh’s exports.Bangladesh has revised the minimum wage for workers in its ready-made garment (RMG) sector to Tk 8,000 (apprx $100).
The existing minimum monthly wage of Tk 5,300 or almost $65 came into effect from Jan 1, 2014.
The announcement was made on Thursday by State Minister for Labour and Employment Majibul Haque.
The government formed a panel by including a representative each from the trade body and a labour organisation to its existing four-strong permanent wage board on Jan 14 this year.
That panel headed by a retired district judge has a member who is not involved with any industry.
When the government wants to readjust the pay structure of any industry, it adds one representative from the workers and owners from each of the corresponding industry.
BANGLA TRIBUNE/ Nashir HossainAround 4 million workers, mostly women, are involved in the around $28 billion industry in Bangladesh.
Despite being the second largest exporter of garment products, Bangladesh faces allegations that all its factories do not follow the pay structure.
The horrible conditions of the garment factory workers drew huge international attention after the 2012 Tazreen Fashions fire and Rana Plaza collapse in 2013.
The foreign buyers and the local entrepreneurs, under fire from rights groups, took steps to reform the industry, especially the workplace.

Thursday's announcement is a 51 percent increase over the existing minimum wage.

Workers unions had been campaigning for a minimum wage of Tk 16,000, while garment owners had proposed an increase to Tk 6,360.

According to the new wage structure, the minimum wage is Tk 8,000. The basic pay is Tk 4,100, rent is Tk 2,050 and Tk 1,850 is for additional costs.

The new wage structure will take effect from December after a notice is issued, the state minister said.

The government has apparently followed the wage structure of the state-owned industrial factory workers to determine the new minimum wage for the garments workers.