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Bangladesh protests against $95 minimum wage for garment workers

Bangladesh unions recently staged street protests to reject the $95 a month minimum wage fixed by the government for the country's four million garment workers. The new wage marked a 51 per cent rise and would be applied from December. The current minimum wage of 5,300 taka ($63) was set in 2013 after at least 1,130 people were killed when the Rana Plaza garment factory in Dhaka collapsed. The new wage was set at 8,000 taka.

Bangladesh unions have been staging protests for higher salaries for years. In December 2016, one of their largest protests was brutally ended by police, with hundreds of workers and union activists detained and charged with violence while more than 1,500 workers were sacked. The US-based Fair Labour Association monitoring group had said in a report in April that Bangladesh garment workers earned lower wages than any other major garment exporting country and rely on excessive overtime to survive.