A navy coup in February 2021 plunged Myanmar right into a political and humanitarian disaster, with widespread violence additionally disrupting the financial system
reviews of elevated labour
abuses in Myanmar
THE world’s second-biggest trend retailer, H&M, has determined to step by step cease sourcing from Myanmar, it instructed Reuters final Thursday (17), as reviews of labour abuses within the nation’s garment factories improve.
H&M turned the newest model to chop ties with suppliers within the nation after Zara proprietor Inditex, Primark, Marks & Spencer and others.
Whereas recognising the problem corporations face to make sure they aren’t linked to abuses, some consultants say the exits might finally depart staff within the nation worse off.
A navy coup in February 2021 plunged Myanmar right into a political and humanitarian disaster, with widespread violence additionally disrupting the financial system.
“After cautious consideration we’ve got now taken the choice to step by step section out our operations in Myanmar,” H&M instructed Reuters.
“We’ve been monitoring the newest developments in Myanmar very carefully and we see elevated challenges to conduct our operations based on our requirements and necessities.”
Myanmar authorities spokesman Zaw Min Tun was not instantly obtainable to touch upon H&M’s introduced exit.
H&M mentioned final Wednesday it was investigating 20 alleged cases of labour abuse at Myanmar garment factories that offer it, as a UK-based NGO mentioned instances of alleged abuses together with wage theft and compelled time beyond regulation have multiplied for the reason that coup.
In a report printed final Wednesday (16), the Enterprise and Human Rights Useful resource Centre (BHRRC) mentioned that it had tracked 156 instances of alleged employee abuse in Myanmar garment factories from February 2022 to February 2023, up from 56 a 12 months earlier than, indicating a deterioration of staff’ rights.
Reuters didn’t independently confirm the allegations. H&M mentioned its determination to exit was not linked to the report’s publication, however that it was the results of its personal analysis of the state of affairs.
The garment sector is a key employer within the southeast Asian nation, the place largely girls staff produce garments and footwear for main manufacturers in additional than 500 factories.
Garment exports from Myanmar fell within the first 5 months of 2023, the World Financial institution mentioned in a June report.
H&M has 39 factories in Myanmar supplying it, based on its public provider checklist.
“I remorse H&M’s announcement, as it is going to have a damaging impression on 1000’s of girls staff in Myanmar,” mentioned Vicky Bowman, director of the Myanmar Centre for Accountable Enterprise and former British ambassador to Myanmar.
“However within the mild of the rise in arrests by the SAC of commerce union organisers, in addition to members of Motion Labor Rights, a labor rights organisation whose enter has been essential to H&M’s heightened human rights due diligence, I’m not shocked by their determination,” she added.
The State Administrative Council (SAC) is the official identify of Myanmar’s ruling navy junta.
Motion Labor Rights didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.