Bangladesh Duty Free Benefits on Exports to
US Depends on Labor
and Safety Issues The continuation of Bangladesh's duty-free benefits on exports to the US will depend on steps its government
takes to improve labor standards and fire safety measures, a visiting US labor
A public hearing on the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) is scheduled for March 28, with worker rights one of
the key areas under review.
Eric Biel, acting associate deputy undersecretary of the Bureau of International
Labor Affairs (ILAB), a unit of the US Department of Labor, is in Bangladesh on a
fact-finding mission ahead of the hearing.
He hinted that the GSP review by the US administration could go in favor of Bangladesh if its government
delegation can show the measures taken to improve labor rights, particularly the implementation of trade union
Pressure from the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) has led to
a number of reviews of GSP benefits for Bangladesh since 2007.
Most textiles, apparel and footwear are not eligible for GSP duty-free treatment, with garment exports to the US
under the GSP facility accounting for just 0.6% of Bangladesh's total exports.
The Affinitas Runway Show The Affinitas & Parfait Runway Show was held during the first LingerieFW at the Metropolitan
Pavilion on Saturday, February 23, 2013.
Press, buyers and others in the intimates industry came from all over to see the new styles from the Fall/Winter 2013 collections.
For more information on Affinitas or Parfait, go to http://affinitasintimates.com/
Fashion Photo Brandy is
wearing Chica Rica Photo by Jerome Hamilton of Studio Time Photography
If you would like more information about Fashion Photo or would like to be included in the McPete Sez Fashion Photo contact Jerome Hamilton at
Studio Time Photography email@example.com
Coquette Gets Set for
Spring 2013 International
-Darque 2013 with plus sizing / Monday night Fashion Show / Trip for 2 to Hawaii- It’s that time of year again and Coquette is gearing up to head to Las Vegas for the International Lingerie Show April 8-10, 2013 held at the Rio Hotel and Casino.
The April International Lingerie Show is the larger of the biannual show and will be the official platform to release the Coquette 2013 Darque catalog. With much anticipation the company is pleased to announce that more styles within Darque are now available in plus.
To read the rest of the story go to page
The Halloween & Party
Expo Grows Again
Celebrates Fifth Anniversary
Photos by Fernando
Cuestas of Nandovision
The Halloween & Party Expo celebrated its fifth anniversary at the start of 2013, from January 19-22.
“This year was our fifth show, and even in a down economy and tough year for Halloween, we grew and exhibitors had excellent sales” says Jonathan Erwin, one of the Expo’s organizers. “That’s a testament to our industry, particularly its resilience. We haven’t had a show during a year in which the economy was doing great; but our
attendees and exhibitors aren’t letting that get in the way of doing business – and from what we have heard, the things that count the most, like sales and orders, were strong this year.” To read the rest of the story and view the photos go to page
Industriall Global Union
Makes Progress The Industriall global trade union federation has described a meeting between stakeholders in the Bangladesh
ready-made garment industry on February 22 as "a step forward" after they agreed to work together on workers'
rights, minimum wages and fire safety.
The meeting was prompted by two recent fires at the Tazreen Fashion and Smart Fashion factories in Dhaka,
which resulted in the death of at least 120 garment workers.
Highlighting the need for a "concrete plan of action," Industriall said urgent progress was needed on the key
issues in order to "secure a sustainable future for the garment industry in Bangladesh."
Representatives from major brands and buyers such as H&M, PVH and Tchibo, the Minister of Industry and the Secretary
of Labor, trade unions, employers' association the Bangladesh Garment Manufactures & Exporters Association
(BGMEA), the International Labor Organization (ILO) and non-governmental organizations
all took part in the talks.
They agreed that improvements on workers' rights, minimum wages and fire safety are needed in the face of increasing
pressure from European and North American consumers.
Among progress so far, it was revealed that the Bangladesh Ministry of Labor is in the process of
finalizing a revision of the Labor Act 2006, and that eight new local trade unions have been registered - although further
efforts to organize workers and facilitate the registration procedure are still required.
Industriall, which brings together major trade unions worldwide representing workers in the garment and textile
industries, also said that the minimum monthly wage of BDT3,000 (US$38) is below a living wage.
It added that "an urgent raise is needed, followed by annual revisions," along the lines of moves by
neighboring countries such as Indonesia ($200), China ($200) and Thailand ($300).
It also emphasized that "co-operation and input of all stakeholders is needed to improve fire safety."
A tripartite statement signed in Bangladesh in January by representatives from the government, employers'
associations and worker organizations is set to finalize its national action plan at the end of February.
Buyers and unions have emphasized the need to agree on one comprehensive program, which will bring together various
initiatives including the Bangladesh Fire and Building Safety Agreement (BFBSA), which Industriall "continues to
"This meeting with all the stakeholders was a step forward," said Jyrki Raina, general secretary of
Industriall. "There is now a common understanding that joint efforts by the government, employers, unions and
brands are required."
He added: "Industriall supports Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her government in the vision to expand the
garment industry and create millions of new decent jobs, noting that the government is already working on "problem
areas" where urgent action is needed to improve the image of the industry.
Raina explained that major brands and buyers will meet at Industriall's global head office in Geneva on 11 March to
discuss their input.
"Industriall is promoting a safety initiative which includes input from all stakeholders in the form of
inspections, training and investment to upgrade hazardous installations."
Separately last week, the union's regional office in Bangladesh helped broker a compensation payment by
retailers Inditex and New Look to the families of victims of the Smart Export Garment factory fire, where seven
workers lost their lives at the end of January.
Protestors Target DHL Two global unions are using London Fashion Week as a platform to protest against the abuse of workers who
deliver clothes - claiming event sponsor DHL is a key culprit.
They are calling for Deutsche Post DHL to become "a responsible supplier to the fashion industry", but say it
instead relies on agency workers to toil on lower wages and with no job security in Britain, Malaysia, Indonesia
Other allegations include illegally firing workers in Turkey and using lie detectors against staff in Colombia,
Panama and South Africa; and staffing a US factory with students who thought they were on a cultural exchange.
The International Transport Workers' Federation and UNI Global Union are urging exhibitors at LFW to question DHL
on its practices.
Aubade Launches its
Collection for Men!
Aubade love men in all their varieties and offer them a choice of boxers,
resolutely chic and naughty.
Share his humor, tell his story, affirm his personality.... These styles are
adorned with 'endearing' and evocative motifs - Jail, Pin-Up, Stamps and Handcuff prints create a modern look.
Aubade’s boxers will surprise you with their daring comfort and originality...
to share without holding back.
For more information go to www.aubade.com Europe Accused of
Wasting Resources Europe needs to set higher targets for the recycling or re-use of materials such as cotton, environmental
campaigners have said, after research found excessive amounts being sent to
incineration and landfill.
A report published by Friends of the Earth Europe found that the European Union (EU) currently landfills and
incinerates 60% of municipal waste - which contributes to demand for more raw materials.
In the case of textiles, for example, Europeans discard 5.8m tons every year, with 75% going to landfill or
incineration and only 25% being recycled.
The study concludes that in order to move to a zero-waste Europe, higher recycling targets need to be accompanied by
targets for reuse and waste prevention.
"Europe is still stuck in a system where valuable materials, many of which come at a high environmental and
social cost, end up in landfill or incineration," said Ariadna Rodrigo, resource use campaigner at Friends of the
Recycling targets are a good start, but reusing products and materials and preventing waste in the first place
won't be the norm until we have EU targets for these too."
Friends of the Earth Europe believes waste prevention, along with product and material reuse and recycling, with
bans on landfill and incineration practices, are the best ways to achieve the sustainable use of resources in