The €117 million incentive declared by the European Union to help retrenched garment workers in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in the country is stuck in indecision still due to a host of reasons, claimed media reports.
Lack of a list of retrenched workers, criteria of jobless workers, absence of a proper work plan and consensus among stakeholders are reportedly some of the principal reasons behind this delay, which has now led the factory owners and the Government’s Economic Relations Division thinking of meeting EU embassy officials shortly to decide on who would get the incentive and how.
It may be mentioned here that after several rounds of discussion, the EU proposed the incentive plan for the jobless workers with the bloc deciding to give a total of €117 million, including €20 million coming from Germany.
However, the proposal got stuck due to complexities involved over definition of jobless workers and determining the number of retrenched workers, as per industry insiders.
Meanwhile, speaking to media, President of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), Dr. Rubana Huq reportedly maintained that EU’s help in this regard was sought considering the existing situation in March but since then things have undergone changes following the Government declaring stimulus package to pay the workers’ wages as well as factories resuming operations again.
In the backdrop of the changed scenario, the BGMEA President reportedly underlined that the EU fund could now be used to help workers of units that want an exit route due to a financial crunch and help factories that are ineligible to avail the Government’s loan, with financial assistance.