67 factory inspectors to be recruited by April 3
The labour and employment ministry will recruit 67 factory inspectors by April 3 in line with a US condition tagged with the restoration of a trade privilege -- generalised system of preferences.
The ministry got a go-ahead from the President on Thursday to recruit the inspectors, Labour and Employment Secretary Mikail Shipar said yesterday.
“We will publish the presidential permission as a gazette notification within a couple of days and send it to Bangladesh Public Service Commission (BPSC),” he said.
The inspectors will be first class non-cadre officials and the appointment will be made through the BPSC, Shipar said.
The government will have to write to the US by April 15 on the progresses it has made in fulfilling the conditions to get back the GSP that was scrapped last year due to shortcomings in labour rights and workplace safety.
The government has already met most of the 16 conditions that the US tagged with the restoration of the GSP, Shipar said.
He said Bangladesh also progressed a lot in fulfilling three major conditions -- recruiting the factory inspectors, launching a database of workers and their factories, and giving freedom of association to workers in export processing zones.
“We are going to open the database tomorrow [today] and a committee is working on the final draft of the amendment to the EPZ law,” Shipar said.
The database, which is accessible by all, will incorporate details of workers and a brief history of the factories they work in.
The findings of the ongoing inspections by Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, and two global platforms -- Accord and Alliance -- will also be put into the database.
The government is ready to respond to the United States Trade Representative, the chief trade negotiation body of the US government, by April 15, said Mahbub Ahmed, senior secretary to the commerce ministry.
“We have attained good progresses in most conditions given by the US for GSP revival,” Ahmed said.