Apparel (Garment) industry
including Clothing, Footware, Tanning and Leather goods
|Title:|| ||Child Labor in Myanmarâ€™s Garment Sector
|Date of publication:|| ||May 2016|
|Description/subject:|| ||Executive Summary:
"â€˜Made in Myanmarâ€™ is ready to make a comeback, with U.S. and EU markets newly re-opened for trade with Myanmarâ€™s garment manufacturers.
Buyers and investors are back in Yangon looking for opportunities, attracted in part by the countryâ€™s low labor costs. However, Myanmar has spent over a decade cut off from Western markets and the compliance culture that has evolved around social and environmental management of supply chains. Meeting buyer expectations now requires not only investing to meet higher requirements for speed and quality, but also ensuring that labor practices meet or exceed international standards.
Child labor is a particular area of concern. In a country with high levels of poverty, low rates of secondary school enrollment, and weak enforcement of labor laws, child labor is unsurprisingly a common option for families in need of additional income. Underage workers (younger than 14, the legal minimum) are prevalent in many sectors, ranging from construction to teashops.
What is a responsible buyer to do? So far, many buyers have chosen to limit their risk and exposure by working solely with established foreign-owned suppliers that already have years of experience adhering to supplier codes of conduct. These factories often require a minimum age for their workers of 16 or even 18, higher than the national legal requirement, which helps to reduce the risk of child labor in a country where age verification is difficult.
While this may be an effective strategy for managing reputational risk, it ignores the broader context and real challenges of widespread poverty and scarce educational opportunities in Myanmar. It also neglects the potential for international investment and supply chains to contribute to a future where children in Myanmar spend their days in school, not in factories. And it overlooks the real risk that the use of child labor outside of responsible companiesâ€™ own supply chains will tarnish the â€œMade in Myanmarâ€ brand.
This report explains the context of child labor in Myanmar, both across sectors and specifically for garment manufacturing. Because there is no comprehensive data on the role of children in the garment sector, the findings are primarily based on interviews with key industry observers and participants. These findings include:
Â» Young workers are participating in the garment sector but usually make up a small percentage of a factoryâ€™s workforce, and underage workers are rare. However, young workers are often working the same hours as adults, and laws regulating their working hours and conditions are not being enforced.
Â» Increased access to U.S. and European markets is reshaping the garment industry, but the majority of factories are not yet selling to U.S. and European buyers, and their labor practices are lagging.
As the garment manufacturing industry grows, the risk factors for child labor could change as well. The demand for low-cost labor will increase as new garment factories open. Other sectors of the economy are growing as well, heightening the competition for skilled workers. Meanwhile, new minimum wage
BSR | Child Labor in Myanmarâ€™s Garment Sector
requirements are also affecting the profile of labor demand, and changes in industry structure could increase the risk of child labor if subcontracting and third-party suppliers become more common..."|
|Author/creator:|| ||Laura Ediger, Jeremy Prepscius and Chris Fletcher|
|Format/size:|| ||pdf (711K-reduced version; 1.1MB-original)|
|Alternate URLs:|| ||http://www.bsr.org/reports/BSR_Child_Labor_Myanmar_Garment_Sector_2016.pdf|
|Date of entry/update:|| ||05 June 2016|
|Title:|| ||UNDER PRESSURE - A Study of Labour Conditions in Garment Factories in Myanmar which are wholly Korean owned or in a Joint Venture with Korean Companies
|Date of publication:|| ||March 2016|
|Description/subject:|| ||"This report is a fruit of a one yearâ€™s research work by a team of researchers, project staff and volunteers at Action Labor Rights (ALR), led by Thurein Aung (ALR), and with advice from Tin Maung Htwe (Data Analysis) and Carol Ransley.
Action Labor Rights (ALR) had its beginnings in 2002 when young members of the National League for Democracy were working with the ILO to advocate for freedom of association and to abolish forced and child labour. In May 2007, six ALR members and more than 80 workers from Hlaingthaya, Shwepyitha and Dagon industrial zones were arrested after taking part in Labour Day celebrations at the US Embassy in Yangon. After their release from prison in January 2012, the activists decided to continue their activities as an organization, and formally established ALR in February 2012. Its activities include training workers on their rights and on labour laws, monitoring the practices of international sourcing companies, research and advocacy, and focusing on the rights of women workers.
The research was made possible with support from the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB) as part of their commitment to build capacity of Myanmar civil society working on business and human rights issues and to create knowledge for raising public awareness. However, the reportâ€™s findings and recommendations belong to ALR alone..."
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ë³¸ â€˜ë…¸ë™ê¸°ë³¸ê¶Œí–‰ë™ì—°ëŒ€(Action Labor Rights)â€™ê°€ ìž‘ì„±í•œ ì´ ë³´ê³ ì„œëŠ” ë¯¸ì–€ë§ˆì—ì„œ í•œêµì¸ì´ ê²½ì˜í•˜ê±°ë‚˜ í˜„ì§€ ìžë³¸ê³¼ ì¡°ì¸íŠ¸ë²¤ì²˜ í˜•íƒœë¡œ ìš´ì˜í•˜ëŠ” ì¼ë¶€ ì˜ë³µê³µìž¥ë“¤ì˜ ë…¸ë™í™˜ê²½ì„ ë‹¤ë£¨ê³ ìžˆìŠµë‹ˆë‹¤. ì¡°ì‚¬ ëŒ€ìƒì˜ ëŒ€ë¶€ë¶„ì€ ì–‘ê³¤ì§€ì—ì´ë‚˜ ë°”ê³ ì˜ ê³µë‹¨ì— ìœ„ì¹˜í•œ íšŒì‚¬ë“¤ë¡œì„œ, ì§€ë‚œí•´ 4 ì›”ë¶€í„° 6 ì›”ê¹Œì§€, ì´ë“¤ ì§€ì— ì„œë¥¸ì•„í™‰ê°œ ê³µìž¥ 1 ì²œ 2 ë°±ëª…ì˜ ë…¸ë™ìžë“¤ë¡œë¶€í„° ìˆ˜ì§‘í•œ ì§ˆì , ì–‘ì ìžë£Œë¥¼ í† ëŒ€ë¡œ ê²°ë¡ ì„ ë„ì¶œí–ˆìŠµë‹ˆë‹¤. ì´ë²ˆ ì¡°ì‚¬ì—ëŠ” ì €í¬ ë‹¨ì²´ ì†Œì† 10 ëª…ì˜ ì—°êµ¬ì›ë“¤ì´ í˜„ìž¥íˆ¬ìž…ë¼, ê³µìž¥ ë§¤ë‹ˆì €ë“¤ì„ í¬í•¨í•œ ì œë³´ìžì™€ ì¤‘ì ì¡°ì‚¬ëŒ€ìƒ ê·¸ë£¹ì„ ì§‘ì¤‘ ì¸í„°ë·°í•˜ê³ , ê´€ë ¨ ìžë£Œë„ ë„˜ê²¨ë°›ì•„ ë³´ê³ ì„œë¥¼ ìž‘ì„±í–ˆìŠµë‹ˆë‹¤.|
|Language:|| ||English, Burmese (á€»á€™á€”á€¹á€™á€¬á€˜á€¬á€žá€¬), Korean|
|Source/publisher:|| ||Action Labor Rights (ALR)|
|Format/size:|| ||pdf (2MB)|
|Alternate URLs:|| ||http://www.myanmar-responsiblebusiness.org/news/under-pressure.html
|Date of entry/update:|| ||08 April 2016|
|Title:|| ||Location Advantages and Disadvantages in Myanmar: The Case of Garment Industry
|Date of publication:|| ||May 2009|
"This research examines location advantages and disadvantages in Myanmar. The most notable location advantage of Myanmar is its abundant and low-wage labor. However, garment firms relocated here often suffer from difficulties such as electricity shortages, expensive and less available transport services, poor telephone, fax, and internet accesses, and cumbersome and time consuming administrative procedures. The wage gap between Myanmar and neighboring countries (including Thailand and China) does not attract garment firms to Myanmar but does lure Myanmar workers to its neighbors. In order to attract more garment firms to Myanmar, the government must enhance location advantages and alleviate disadvantages. While the country can do little to manipulate wages, it can reduce set-up, operation, and service link production costs through public policy and investment. A major priority for increasing the attractiveness of Myanmar is development of its infrastructure, especially the electricity supply. Further, institutional service link costs can be reduced by streamlining administrative procedures and establishing good governance. Such an improved business and investment climate will make it possible for the garment industry in Myanmar to compete in the global market."
Keywords: Myanmar (Burma), garment industry, location advantage, location, disadvantage, cost-benefit analysis, production network, competitiveness,
set-up cost, operation cost, service link cost, infrastructure|
|Author/creator:|| ||KUDO Toshihiro|
|Source/publisher:|| ||Institute of Developing Economies (IDE) Discussion Paper 203|
|Format/size:|| ||pdf (126K)|
|Date of entry/update:|| ||12 September 2009|
|Title:|| ||Waiting for an Industrial Revolution
|Date of publication:|| ||September 2003|
|Description/subject:|| ||"Industry in Burma lags well behind that of its neighbors largely because of double standards, military meddling, and now, stiffer US economic sanctions...
Small may be beautiful but it is also vulnerable. And as increased US sanctions on Burma halt imports to American markets, all but the largest private garment factories in Burma are falling like dominoes.
On the outskirts of Rangoon, several private garment firms with fewer than 100 employees are shutting down, explains the editor of a business journal in the capital. Signed into law on July 29, Americaâ€™s severe sanctions will likely eliminate hundreds of thousands of jobs. The ban on imports threatens to cripple Burmaâ€™s entire labor-intensive garment industry.
Even the big manufacturers are buckling under the weight of US pressure. "We are almost dying. The future for our business looks so bleak," says a South Korean manager from Myanmar Daewoo International in Rangoon, speaking to The Irrawaddy on the condition of anonymity..."|
|Author/creator:|| ||Min Zin|
|Source/publisher:|| ||"The Irrawaddy" Vol. 11, No 7|
|Alternate URLs:|| ||http://www2.irrawaddy.org/article.php?art_id=3049|
|Date of entry/update:|| ||06 November 2003|