TIB finds graft, irregularities in RMG export supply chain | Greenwatch Dhaka | The leading online daily of Bangladesh

TIB finds graft, irregularities in RMG export supply chain

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Dhaka – A number of foreign buyers of ready made garments (RMG) are exploiting the Bangladeshi suppliers through buying products from them and then later terming them as ‘non-compliant’, a research report of Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) saidon Thursday.
TIB, at a press conference in its headquarters in the capital shared the findings of the research on “The role of stakeholders in preventing the irregularities and corruption prevailing in the supply chain of the RMG sector”.
The research was conducted by the TIB team comprised of Nazmul Huda Mina, Assistant Program Manager, Nina Shamsur Rahman, Deputy Program Manager and Shahjada M Akram, Senior Program Manager. All three are from the Policy and Research Department of the TIB.Speaking on the occasion, TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman said that they have found that some foreign buyers are in practice of buying from non-compliant RMG factories to increase their profit.
“But when the product reaches to their country, then they create several reasons and excuses and ultimately deprive the suppliers by terming them non-compliant”, he said adding that they are exploiting the suppliers to maximize their profit margin
When asked about the exact number of the foreign buyers who are in practice of doing such thing, Dr Iftekharuzzaman said that the research conducted by the transparency watchdog was a ‘qualitative research’ and revealing the ‘exact’ number was out of the scope of the research work.
“It will be incorrect to quantify because it was out of our research scope. Our qualitative research however was done maintaining the international standards”.
It is to be noted that a qualitative research is primarily exploratory research.  It is used to gain an understanding of underlying reasons, opinions, and motivations. On the other hand a quantitative research is used to quantify the problem by way of generating numerical data or data that can be transformed into useable statistics.
The TIB Executive Director was asked whether they plan to conduct any quantitative research on the same issue, he replied, “It’s not that easy to work with statistics in this sector because it is very complex. So, we are not thinking about that now”.
“We conducted our research work by interviewing 70 relevant persons from the sector staring from buyers, top management to the lower one to understand the whole supply-chain scenario”.
He said that it was conducted with support from Transparency International Germany as Europe is one of the most important buyers of RMG from Bangladesh and they want to have a better insight about the current scenario of RMG here.
In our findings, we see that corruption and irregularities are prevailing in almost all the 16 steps of the whole supply chain management of the RMG sector, said Dr Iftekharuzzaman.
He said that the research showed corruptions and malpractices are prevailing at order, production, inspection and supply stages of the whole supply-chain management. Many owners of the factories also bribe the inspectors for compliance certificate and give sub-contract to other non-compliant factories.
TIB placed some suggestions including the formation of ‘dispute cell’ by the Bangladesh Garments Manufacturer and Exporters Association (BGMEA), inspection of factories without setting prior appointment and taking legal action against the factory owners who are in practice of malpractice among others. – Staff Reporter

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