RMG NOTES | The Daily Star
  • Where next for our industry beyond Covid-19?

    Three months after most of the major global markets of Bangladeshi garments entered a lockdown period and closed many of their shops, we are beginning to get a better picture of how the industry might look as we move beyond Covid-19.

  • Garments industry needs evolution, not revolution

    We need to do better. We need a complete “industry reset”. We “cannot go back to the way things were before”. I hear all of these sentiments and read about them each day on my various social media feeds. Part of me thinks, “yes, we must strive for a better industry”.

  • Don’t let the price fool you

    I have posted on social media regularly about the issue of brands delaying payments to suppliers in the wake of growing concerns about Covid-19.

  • Global suppliers are stronger working together

    There are very few positives to be taken from the past few weeks as Covid-19 has wreaked havoc around the world, killing otherwise healthy people—and placing otherwise healthy businesses on life-support. In fact, as I write this, a great many garment suppliers globally are in urgent need of their own “intensive care”. Cash is the lifeblood of our industry, and right now, many thousands if not tens of thousands of garment factories around the world are running out of it.

  • How apparel buyers can support their manufacturing partners

    The Covid-19 pandemic is wreaking havoc throughout the global fashion industry. A recently updated report by McKinsey and Company and the Business of Fashion—“The State of Fashion 2020”—states that the global fashion industry will face a 27 percent to 30 percent contraction in business due to the outbreak of the virus.

  • Trust between apparel manufacturers and brands is another victim of Covid-19

    The building of trust, meaningful relationships between manufacturers and customers in the global apparel industry has played a vital role in the continuing success of the sector.

  • When contracts have no meaning

    What does a “contract” actually mean? I am sure many garment factory owners have been pondering over this issue these past few weeks. Here’s a simple definition of a contract: “A written or spoken agreement, especially one concerning employment, sales, or tenancy, that is intended to be enforceable by law.”

  • World needs to use or lose Bangladesh apparel industry

    It has taken more than four decades of incredibly hard work to build up the Bangladeshi RMG industry. In fact, the first export-oriented RMG industry of Bangladesh began when Daewoo of South Korea established a joint venture in 1977, almost 43 years ago.

  • Plagued by coronavirus, can the RMG industry pull together?

    Recently, I wrote about how coronavirus (COVID-19), which is now on the verge of becoming a global pandemic, has provided a wake-up call for Bangladesh and its RMG industry.

  • Factories need to grasp the nettle

    Never under-estimate the power of marketing and PR. At present, there is a huge disparity in the global apparel industry in terms of who is doing what with regard to sustainability. Some brands are doing a lot. Some brands are doing a little. Some brands are doing nothing at all.

  • When will the global apparel industry truly clean up its act?

    News of another apparel factory tragedy on February 8, which claimed seven innocent lives, throws into sharp focus how much is still needed to be done in the global apparel industry to ensure the safety of its workers.

  • Bangladesh RMG Workers

    The coronavirus conundrum for Bangladesh apparel industry

    The corona-virus, which has already killed hundreds of people in China and is now making its way across the globe, will inevitably cause significant disruption to apparel supply chains during 2020. The question is, to what extent, for how long, and how will Bangladesh be impacted?

  • Can the new leaders build on the legacy of their predecessors?

    In family businesses, the concept of “succession planning” is well known. It is the process of identifying and developing new leaders who can replace old leaders when they leave, retire or die.

  • Time for our apparel industry to promote its sustainable credentials

    "You can’t sell anything if you can’t tell anything,” stated Beth Comstock, former vice chair of General Electric, and I feel this is true when we consider the advances in sustainability made by the apparel industry of Bangladesh and the growing global awareness of the importance of the sustainability agenda.

  • It’s good to talk

    We need to talk more in the workplace. We need to communicate better. We need to get things out in the open, to air grievances, share our hopes, fears and concerns and, where appropriate, ideas, aspirations and goals for the future.

  • The mark-up monotony

    "Find the right price for an irresistible offer, which, by the way, isn’t necessarily the lower price.” So stated W. Chan Kim, Professor of Strategy and Management at INSEAD, one of the world’s leading and largest graduate business schools.

  • Industrial strife affects us all

    In recent months, we’ve seen more negative press in international newspapers and journals about the apparel industry of Bangladesh.

  • Sustainable ‘costing’ can empower factory owners

    We hear a lot about the concept of sustainability from an environmental and social standpoint. But what about sustainable business? Is the current customer-supplier model sustainable in the long term with respect to the global apparel industry?

  • The key to unlocking our potential

    It is widely agreed that boosting efficiency is vital to the long-term health and well-being of Bangladesh’s RMG industry.

  • Brands and suppliers should collaborate on climate

    The world is a frightening place right now. In the past few weeks we have seen out of control bushfires ravaging huge parts of Australia, wrecking land and homes and killing many people and animals in the process.

  • 2019: The year sustainability got serious

    From a sustainability perspective, the global apparel industry changed quite markedly in 2019.

  • 2020s offer exciting new chapter for Bangladesh RMG

    The year 2019 was a year of highs and lows for Bangladesh’s RMG sector. On balance, it was a year of positivity. However, it would be naïve to ignore the fact that things were not all plain sailing and that there is a great deal of work to be done as we enter the new decade.

  • Let’s grab 2020 with both hands

    have recently written articles focusing on two of Bangladesh’s competitors in the global apparel sourcing industry: Vietnam and, to a lesser extent, Ethiopia. I believe it is healthy to discuss the competition and hopefully all these countries can together spur each other onto greater things.

  • Why Vietnam provides a useful benchmark for Bangladesh

    If we were to describe the global garment and textile industry as a three-horse race, China would be out in front with two other horses fast closing in.

  • Should we be wary of Ethiopia?

    There is much talk of Ethiopia as the next “go to” apparel sourcing location right now, but how much is hearsay and how much should the Bangladesh Ready-Made Garment (RMG) industry fear this new rival needs scrutiny.