Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN) – The two-day ‘Sustainable Apparel Forum 2017’ and Denim Expo began in the capital Dhaka on Wednesday aiming to connect the global buyers with local supplies.
Commerce Minister of Bangladesh Tofail Ahmed inaugurated the programmes, organised by Bangladesh Apparel Exchange (BAE) in the city’s International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB).
Referring to the country’s target of earning US$37 billion from exports this year, the minister said due to volatile global economy, erosion of Euro value, and global downturn in garment sales, exporters might miss this year’s shipment target.
Still, he expressed the hope that it will not come down under $36 billion.
He also said the government was considering bringing an amendment to the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority Act, 1980 considering the welfare of workers.
The minister also called upon all involved with the RMG industry to work together for a sustainable future.
Speaking on the occasion, former president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Atiqul Islam said the government had amended the labour law within 76 days of Rana Plaza collapse and formed a labour welfare fund to support the labour force. “We need for increasing apparel price, which is crucial to the sector’s sustainable business.”
Moderated by Rubana Huq, Managing Director of Mohammadi Group, the inaugural session of the two-day event was also attended by German Ambassador to Bangladesh Thomas Prinz, French Ambassador Sophie Aubert, Dutch Ambassador Leoni Margaretha Cuelenaere, HSBC Bangladesh CEO Francois DE Maricourt, H&M regional head for Bangladesh and Pakistan Roger Hubert, and BAE Chief Executive Officer Mostafiz Uddin.
Four knowledge sessions were held at the forum on saving water, resources and cost, energy efficiency, green factories and sustainable financing.
The objective of the sessions was to facilitate meaningful exchange of knowledge to make sustainability easier to be exercised by garment factories and individuals.
At the two-day long 6th the Bangladesh Denim Expo at the same venue where 50 business houses from 12 countries including Bangladesh, China, Turkey, Spain, Italy, Pakistan, Japan, San Marino, Germany, Brazil, India and Hong Kong displayed their products.
“The denim expo is a very important event that aims to connect the global buyers with the Bangladesh suppliers,” Mostafiz Uddin explained.
He also said: “We want to connect the top players of denim such as brands, retailers, manufacturers and experts in order to share a global approach towards the main challenges of our times.”
A total of five informative seminars and workshops on trends, innovation and new technologies, global denim market and quality assurance are also being held at the two-day expo.