The Accord wants apparel bodies in Bangladesh like BGMEA and BKMEA to join its advisory board. But the two are not willing to do that as they feel the board won’t take effective decisions. The Accord is an independent agreement designed to make all garment factories in Bangladesh safe workplaces. It includes independent safety inspections at factories and public reporting of the results of these inspections.
However, the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) don’t mind joining Accord's steering committee. Accord feels having these associations on board is necessary especially when it comes to issues like payment of wages during operation suspension and critical situations.
The Bangladesh Accord has 156 global brands and retailers. It came about in the aftermath of the Rana Plaza factory collapse. It requires companies to pay up to $5,00,000 annually to administer inspections, which are backed by labor groups. If a factory fails to employ necessary safety procedures, that information will be made public and the factory will be embarrassed and may lose business retailers.
Almost 40 teams of international fire, electrical, and structural engineers are working with Bangladeshi engineers and technicians on the inspections.