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MiB-CPD Webinar on Vulnerability, Resilience and Recovery in the RMG Sector

January 23, 20210

MiB-CPD Virtual Dialogue on “Vulnerability, Resilience and Recovery in the RMG Sector in view of COVID Pandemic: Findings from the Field Survey”

Mapped in Bangladesh (MiB) [RMG mapping project by CED-BracU], in cooperation with Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), organized a virtual dialogue (Webinar) titled “Vulnerability, Resilience and Recovery in the RMG Sector in view of COVID Pandemic: Findings from the Field Survey”.

The dialogue was held on 23 January 2021 at 10:30 am via online, to disseminate the findings of a research study recently conducted jointly by MiB  and CPD.

Ms Shirin Akhter, MP, Member, Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Primary and Mass Education, Government of Bangladesh joined the virtual dialogue as the Special Guest.

Mr Mohammad Hatem, First Vice-President, Exporters’ Association of Bangladesh and Former Vice President, Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) was the Guest of Honour.

Dr A K Enamul Haque, Professor, Department of Economics, East West University and Director and Member, Economic Research Group; Mr Miran Ali, Director, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Managing Director, Misami Garments Ltd; Ms Taslima Akhter, Activist and Photographer and Professor Mohammad Abdul Momen, Director, BGMEA and Managing Director, Fashion Knit Garments Ltd.; delivered their remarks at the dialogue as Distinguished Discussants.

CPD’s Executive Director, Dr Fahmida Khatun delivered the introductory remarks. Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem, Research Director, CPD; was the keynote presenter at the event. The dialogue was chaired by Professor Rehman Sobhan, Chairman, CPD; Former Member, Advisory Council of the Caretaker Government (1991); and Former Director General, BIDS.

The entire session was moderated by Mr Syed Hasibuddin Hussain, Project Manager, Mapped in Bangladesh (MiB), CED-BracU.

At the keynote presentation,  Dr Moazzem described the research objective of exploring the vulnerability, resilience and recovery of the RMG sector during this ongoing period of Covid-19 pandemic. The study was a response to the stark struggle being faced by the export-oriented apparels sector of Bangladesh attempting to recover from the COVID-19 related challenge.

Since the outbreak of the deadly virus, the sector has confronted multiple shocks and vulnerabilities. Thanks to various stimulus packages provided to the export-oriented sector, the sector has started to recover gradually. However, the process of resilience and recovery of the sector is likely to slow and will require a longer period of time. A number of studies have been undertaken at the initial phase of the Covid-19 pandemic to appreciate the level of shocks and vulnerabilities of the RMG sector. However, there is importance in understanding the resilience and recovery of RMG enterprises after the initial phase of the pandemic.

The study assessed RMG enterprises’ level of resilience and recovery during the longer time period. A nationally representative sample survey has been conducted over 600 RMG enterprises with a view to assess the vulnerabilities, resilience and recovery process in the sector. Based on the analysis, a number of forward-looking policy suggestions have been put forward for the development of the RMG sector in the medium term.

Professor Dr. Rahim B. Talukdar, Adviser, CED and Team Leader, MiB; delivered the closing remarks and vote of thanks.

The virtual dialogue became lively with the attendance by academicians, industry leaders, researchers, factory owners, journalists, representatives from brands/buyers; workers; associations; right-based organizations, NGO/INGOs, among others.

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