Eight Dutch institutional investors, with combined assets of €725 bn, have launched a platform campaigning for fair wages in the textile sector in the developing world. The Platform Living Wage Financials (PLWF) initiative demanded that textile manufacturers increase the salaries of staff in clothing factories to a ‘living wage’.
The investors – including asset managers MN, Kempen, Achmea IM, NN IP and Robeco – have also targeted banning child labour and excessive overtime. The platform expected manufacturers to provide better wages at suppliers end as well as in their own factories. It engaged 27 textile firms initially, to find out whether they have a policy in place to improve wages in poor countries.
According to Van Lierop, this included H&M, Puma, Adidas and PVH Corp – the parent company of fashion brand Tommy Hilfiger – at the forefront. PLWF’s second step would be to assess whether policies are applied in practice and whether they lead to higher wages.