About 63 ready-made garment (RMG) factories operating under the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association were closed in 2019, leaving over 32,582 RMG workers without a job, said Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi in Parliament yesterday.
Of the 2200 knitwear factories working under the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association, 1,280 factories did not renew their membership last year and are probably no longer in operation.
However, those factories could once again begin production if given work orders from importing countries, he added.
During the parliament session, Imran Ahmad, the welfare and overseas employment minister for expatriates, said that a total of 717 female workers returned from different middle-eastern countries after being subjected to repression and other human rights violations in 2019.
The government have taken a massive initiative to create an awareness programme to ensure legal and safe migration for employment overseas, Ahmad said in response to a question from M Faridul Haq Khan, an Awami League member of parliament.
Under the initiative, the government has disbursed Tk 2.82 crore to hold awareness seminars at the division and upazila levels in fiscal 2019-20.
In 2018-19, the government provided Tk 94.64 lakh to arrange such seminars across the country, he added. Last year, awareness campaigns were held in 63 districts and 480 upazilas.
The minister said that aside from the awareness campaigns, the government is trying to provide expertise development training, verifying work permits and ensuring safe migration through registered recruitment agencies.