Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, State Minister for Labour and Employment M Mujibul Haque Chunnu, BGMEA President Md Siddiqur Rahman along with others inaugurated BGMEA-SEIP's day-long fair in the city yesterday. -AA
Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) for the first time organized a day-long fair for offering jobs to the people who participated in a month-long training program earlier. The fair held at International Convention City, Bashundhara (ICCB) in the capital.
At the fair, 40 garment factories offered jobs to around 1,000 people to work as operators executives and manager level. All the jobseekers received training on readymade garment (RMG) through the 'Skill for Employment Investment Programme (SEIP)' project, jointly conducted by the BGMEA and the government.
Minister for Commerce Tofail Ahmed inaugurated the fair in the morning. State Minister for Labour and Employment M Mujibul Haque Chunnu, Finance ministry Senior Secretary Hedayet Ullah Al Mamun, BGMEA Senior Vice-president Faruque Hasan and BGMEA Vice-president for Finance Mohammed Nasir also spoke at the opening ceremony while BGMEA President Md Siddiqur Rahman, was in the chair.
Addressing the gathering Tofail called upon to support the RMG sector positively, as the sector is driving the country's economy. "Every agency related to businesses including the National Board of Revenue (NBR) has to help the RMG entrepreneurs."
"India is giving incentives to their businesses with a view to replacing Bangladesh from the second largest exporter in RMG sector. There are also many internal and external problems in the sector. So, we all have to support them in a positive way," he pointed out.
Commerce Minister also suggested the labour leaders to demand increasing price of the apparel products to the buyers. He also told Chunnu for making the trade organisations free from outsiders.
BGMEA leader Mohammed Nasir said that the finance ministry took up the SEIP project in partnership with nine trade bodies and five public and private organisations to create 260,000 skilled manpower across the country by 2018.
He noted that BGMEA has tied up with the SEIP to create 43,800 skilled manpower on 15 subjects by 2018 as per the requirement of the garment sector.
"This project has already provided training to 20,000 people of which about 15,000 are operators and 5,000 are mid-level executive for garment factories. Of them, some 10,000 trainees have already got jobs in garment factories," he said.
Nasir also urged Finance Ministry Senior Secretary to increase the course duration of the project from one month to three month.
Replying to Nasir's request Mamun assured increasing of the course duration from the expanded implementation of the project as they have set a target to train 5,00000 people in total under the project.
Chunnu asked the RMG entrepreneurs of the country to look into trade organisations affair as the foreign buyers offered lower price blaming safety issues. BGMEA President said, "We want trade organisations, but those must be sector-centric."
He urged the State Minster to form trade union or federation and demanded a formulated regulatory frame work to conduct their activities.
"We have no excuse about trade organisations, but the government have to keep these away from the outsiders, who are not workers," Siddiqur said.
Urging the RMG entrepreneurs-friendly investment environment, BGMEA President also said that they are harassed by everyone, especially by the customs and they have to pay high-interest loan, while some people are looting money from the bank without any punishment.