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Bangladesh: Accord adamant on staying on

Accord wants an extension beyond its five-year operation term. Pressure has been mounting on Bangladesh to let Accord continue operations. Accord, the platform of European buyers and retailers, wants time to make a prepared transition of its factory inspection and remediation work to the Remediation Coordination Cell (RCC).

Nearly 200 investors and the Clean Clothes Campaign have been spearheading demands for an extension of Accord’s tenure and have called upon global partners to coerce action against Bangladesh on the Accord issue.

Accord’s five-year-term to remediate Bangladesh’s apparel factories ended on November 30. But apparel industry leaders are unwilling to let it stay on in Bangladesh any longer. They say Accord has forced many of them to undergo expensive remediation work, but even after such expensive remediation work, buyers, though they are happy with the compliance work, are not paying a fair sum to enable factories to recover their costs.

Some other actions of Accord – like terminating ties with over 500 factories for noncompliance – have also been highly criticised. Bangladesh wants to impose conditions on Accord—but international rights groups say this will strip it of its independence. Accord’s petition challenging the directive to stop activities will be heard by the court on April 7.