Position on Minimum Wage Negotiations in Bangladesh
Living Wages & a Right to Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining Worldwide
Currently, the minimum wage in Bangladesh is being renegotiated. The minimum wage was last increased in 2018. According to local labour law, this is done at least every five years by a six-member Minimum Wage Board, which decides on the minimum wage in all sectors. Trade unions have repeatedly called for an increase in the minimum wage, also against the backdrop of the current high inflation.
The Bangladesh Garment & Industrial Workers Federation (BGIWF) has now sent a letter to the Textiles Partnership asking for support. The Akato Garment Workers Federation, Bangladesh Independent Garment Workers Union Federation, Bangladesh Revolutionary Garment Workers Federation, National Garment Workers Federation are also signatories to the letter.
The Partnership for Sustainable Textiles supports fair pay for workers in the textile industry and emphasises the important role of trade unions, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining in this context. The Steering Committee of the Textiles Partnership, on behalf of the membership, has stated the following:
"Together with trade unions, companies and civil society, we advocate for fair and formal working conditions and living wages worldwide. Living wages enable a life in dignity, a declared goal of all actors in the textile supply chain. Trade unions play an important role worldwide for fairly paid and secure jobs. The rights to freedom of association and collective bargaining are among the most fundamental rights. It is important that union members are free to carry out their activities without restriction, interference or fear of retaliation."
Within the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles, Living Wages are considered one of our four focus topics. The Partnership and its members strive for the payment of living wages throughout the supply chain according to recognised benchmarks based on internationally recognised reference frameworks.