Reopening of RMG factories depends on coronavirus situation: Rubana

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Dhaka, April 17: President of Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Rubana Huq on Friday said the reopening of their factories on April 26 fully depends on the improvement of coronavirus situation in the country.“We’ll finalise the decision to reopen the factories considering how the corona situation goes on,” she told UNB.

Rubana said they are observing the situation. “We won’t reopen the factories killing people or putting our workers in trouble,” she said.

She said they will consult relevant stakeholders and the authorities concerned before reopening the RMG factories.

BGMEA earlier had decided to reopen its factories from April 26 as the ongoing coronavirus shutdown and public holidays are set to end on April 25, unless the government extends it further.

The apex body of the apparel sector had also tried to reopen the factories on April 5 and several thousand workers gone to Dhaka from the adjoining districts taking too much of trouble amid the shutdown and the serious risk of coronavirus infection.

As the government extended the shutdown until April 25, the BGMEA authorities also backed off from its decision to reopen the factories.

Meanwhile, Prof Abul Kalam Azad, director general of the health directorate, issued a circular on Thursday saying that the entire Bangladesh is at risk of the coronavirus pandemic as the infection has now spread to various parts of the country.

He said people must stay indoors as it will not be possible to contain the spread of the virus if physical distancing cannot be ensured.

The number of coronavirus cases and mortality is increasing in the country alarmingly every day.

Bangladesh has so far confirmed 1,572 coronavirus cases and 60 deaths from the highly contagious virus as of Thursday.

Among those, the country confirmed a record number of 341 positive cases and 10 deaths from the virus in only 24 hours in as of Thursday.

Meanwhile, the global death tolls from the highly infectious disease reached 136,032 on Thursday afternoon.