RMIT University and the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturing and Exporting Association (BGMEA) will host Australia's first forum on the readymade garments industry this week (19 November).
The event will focus on the way forward for the global garments industry following the disastrous Rana Plaza factory collapse in April 2013, which left more than 1000 workers dead and many more seriously injured.
Keynote speakers include Bangladesh Finance Minister Tofail Ahmed, President of the BGMEA Atiqul Islam, and Bangladesh High Commissioner to Australia, Kazi Imtiaz Hossain.
The forum will be attended by major Australian retailers and representatives from trade unions and the Australian fashion industry.
Associate Professor Sharif As-Saber, School of Management, RMIT, said: "The garment and textile industry has a significant stake in the global economy.
"While Bangladesh is the second largest garment producer after China, BGMEA is one of the largest industry organisations in the world with more than 5000 member factories under its belt.
"This event will provide an opportunity to establish, foster and enhance business linkages and collaborations among governments, garments owners and buyers.
"It will also help clear the air among Australian buyers and consumers with respect to the various misconceptions about the garments manufacturing industry in Bangladesh and will help further improve the working environment in garments factories in Bangladesh and elsewhere."
A key outcome of the forum will be a set of recommendations for industry and governments at both the factory and buyer ends.
What: Global Garments Industry After Rana Plaza: The Way Forward
When: Wednesday, 19 November, 9am-5pm
Where: Melbourne Convention Centre, 1 Convention Place, South Wharf, Melbourne
For interviews: Associate Professor Sharif As-Saber, (03) 9925 5526 or 0402 960 410.
For general media enquiries: Ainslie Logsdon, PR Coordinator, (03) 9925 1307 or 0438 255 433.