Moving towards decent working conditions in Bangladesh

Project description

Title: Social Protection for Workers in the Textile and Leather Sector (SOSI)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)​​​​​​​
Country: Bangladesh​​​​​​​
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE)
Overall term: 2022 to 2025

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Context

Bangladesh is perceived as the apparel supplier to the world. As a major player in the global textile industry, it employs more than four million people across the supply chain. However, working conditions in the sector are still inadequate. The COVID-19 induced recession, which led to layoffs with hardly any financial support, is only the latest example of workers not being sufficiently protected against work-related life-cycle risks.

This is especially striking in the area of employment injury protection. The legal provisions and strategies for accident prevention, rehabilitation and compensation are rudimentary and fragmented. What is more, the responsible governmental agencies lack the necessary institutional capacities for building social insurance systems. In particular, the digital management of social assistance and insurance programmes is underdeveloped.

Objective

The project is improving Bangladesh’s nascent social insurance system by creating better conditions for access to social protection for workers in the textile and leather sector.

The project’s predecessor – Employment Injury Protection Scheme for Workers in the Textile and Leather Industries – increased awareness ofn measures for prevention, rehabilitation and compensation among industry stakeholders.

Approach

The project works with the ILO to establish administrative processes for the Bridging Solution (Pilot of an Employment Injury Protection Scheme) as well as its transition into a permanent employer-financed scheme. Additionally, it strengthens the ministry’s capabilities in the digital management of social insurance systems. Of particular importance is the creation of a workers’ database, as it forms the technical basis for the development of any further social insurance schemes.

To improve the level of knowledge of national actors in the field of social insurance the project establishes a dialogue forum and plans the introduction of a social insurance course at a higher-educational institution.

Last update: May 2022