BRAC University (BRACU) and the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) have signed a groundbreaking agreement to support the collection of credible, comprehensive and accurate data about the ready-made garment (RMG) industry. They have also agreed to disclose the information to the public in the form of an interactive online map, as well as to crowd-source data in order to keep the figures up to date.
The digital mapping programme will be implemented by the Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED) and BRAC University, and coordinated by BRAC USA. The initiative is being funded by C&A Foundation and further donors are expected to join.
The objective of the mapping is to provide accurate, credible and current RMG factory information to industry stakeholders in order to enable greater accountability for working conditions and enhance confidence in the ability of the sector to contribute to equitable development in Bangladesh. Without this kind of industry-wide data collection, the challenges of the industry will surely persist.
This programme is the first of its kind. It will map RMG factories across all garment-producing districts in Bangladesh, providing a detailed database of factories, including subcontractors, on an interactive, digital map. In addition to factory names and locations, the map will also feature information such as numbers of workers, product type, export country, certifications, and brand customers. The program will be guided by a multi-stakeholder Project Advisory Committee, comprising of representatives of workers, NGOs, donors, employers, and industry associations, among others.