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    Rana Plaza One Year On Rana Plaza One Year On Presentation Transcript

    • Rana Plaza One Year On Comhlámh 12 Parliament Street, Dublin, 2 27 May 2014 Dr. Conor McCabe UCD School of Social Justice
    • Bangladesh Independence in 1971 – went from public- sector led import-substituting regime to one characterized by measures to promote the private sector and export-led activities. Institutional policies – privatization of public sector, reduction in the number of sectors reserved for public investment, relaxation of rules and procedures for foreign investment Incentive policies – trade liberalization and tariff rationalization, financial sector reforms, export subsidies, corporate tax rebates – dine in part to attract foreign investment 1980 – establishment of an export processing zone in Chittagong, Bangladesh
    • The idea of an export processing zone was suggested to Bangladesh President, Ziaur Rahman in 1976 by the then president of the World Bank, Robert McNamara The idea did not come out of an internal debate within the state – in fact, elements within the state were suspicious of foreign investment. The foreign investment side won through and in 1978 the National Economic Council approved the establishment of a zone in South Halishahar, Chittagong. It opened in 1980 with limited incentives, and became fully operational in 1984. The export processing zone in Dhaka was opened in 1993.
    • The creation of a Third World female industrial work force "took off" in the 1960s and by the 1980s was a major phenomenon in dozens of Asian, Latin American and African societies. - http://www.culturalsurvival.org/ourpublications/csq/art icle/third-world-women-factories the executives of certain types of manufacturing companies began to worry about the increasing unionization of their own previously unorganized women workers [in the West] and the consequent pressures for better working conditions and more reasonable wages. These companies operated in some of the most intensely competitive industrial sectors and survived by substituting cheap labour for expensive equipment. Top priority was given to minimizing labour costs. In fact, minimizing labour costs was the chief reason why factory workforces were women in the first place. [Western workforce was replaced by Asian, Latin American and African workforce.] Firms that deliberately adopted these labour practices were manufacturers of toys, textiles, garments, footwear, electronics and processed foods.
    • At about the same time international lending and aid agencies such as the International Monetary Fund urged elites in Third World countries to increase the production of foreign financed industrial goods for export in order to offset their increasing imbalances of payments - imbalances that were growing in the 1970s due to the higher price of imported oil, private purchases of foreign luxury goods for local elites and government purchases of expensive weaponry to bolster nervous regimes. Out of these discussions - typical all-male affairs - came the formula for development now referred to as Export Processing Zones (EPZs). http://www.culturalsurvival.org/ourpublica tions/csq/article/third-world-women- factories
    • In the twenty years from 1970 to 1990, the number of textile, clothing and footwear (TCF) workers increased by 597 percent in Malaysia; 416 percent in Bangladesh; 385 percent in Sri Lanka; 334 percent in Indonesia; 271 percent in the Philippines; and 137 percent in Korea. http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/media-centre/press-releases/WCMS_008075/lang--en/index.htm