Thirty-nine factory inspectors joined the labour and employment ministry yesterday to fortify the government's effort to ensure safety in garment factories.
The recruitment is part of the government's plan to appoint additional 200 inspectors to fulfil a requirement set by the American government to revive the GSP to their market, Labour Secretary Mikail Shipar said yesterday.
The ministry will have a total of 310 inspectors after the new recruits join work, Shipar said. The USTR was scheduled to review the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) for Bangladesh in December, but it was postponed following an appeal from Bangladesh on November 25.
The United States Trade Representative, the chief trade negotiation body for the US government, suspended the GSP on June 27, citing serious shortcomings in labour rights and safety in the factories.
The next review of the privileges to the US may take place in March or April next year, the secretary said.
Bangladesh has got another three to four months to improve the labour rights and safety standards in the factories, as the US has deferred the date of review, he said.
Regarding factory inspections by a panel of engineers led by Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Shipar said the process became a bit slow due to ongoing political instability.