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Primark Endorses ILO Covid-19 Global Garment Industry Action Announced Today

Primark firmly endorses today’s announcement from the UN’s International Labour Organisation calling for urgent collaboration between stakeholders to support garment industry workers across the world affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Katharine Stewart, Ethical Trade and Environmental Sustainability Director at Primark said:
“The importance of this initiative led by the ILO cannot be overstated. The manufacturers and their workers in the garment supply chain are in urgent need of funding from global financial institutions and governments in order to protect jobs and get through this crisis. Longer term we hope this initiative will also support the introduction or strengthening of schemes many of us take for granted, such as employment protection and health benefits. It will take the collective efforts of all the signatories to make this call to action a reality.”

Notes:

  • Primark has been working closely with the ILO and its own suppliers for a number of weeks to help determine a constructive way for stakeholders to collaboratively deliver the necessary support to those affected by the crisis.
  • Following extensive one-to-one conversations with its own suppliers, which began four weeks ago, and helped Primark identify mitigating options, including extended payment terms, Primark has committed to paying for some £370m of additional orders for product over and above the £1.5bn of stock in stores, depots and in transit. This now brings Primark’s total stock both owned and committed to nearly £2bn while the stores remain closed.
  • Separately, Primark has also established a wages fund to make sure workers in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Vietnam are paid as soon as possible for work on Primark product that was in production.
  • Primark has also been urging, in the strongest possible terms, governments in the countries from which it sources its products, to take action in support of their local businesses and workers, in the same way that the UK and many European governments are doing.
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