News / Asia

Walmart to Inspect Bangladesh Factories

VOA News
The world's largest retailer, Walmart, is ordering inspections of all 279 of its suppliers' factories in Bangladesh and will publicly announce the results.

Walmart is acting after a building containing garment factories in Bangladesh collapsed last month, killing more than 1,100 workers.

Walmart says it will no longer buy goods from any factory that fails safety inspection and does not make proper repairs.

Walmart is acting separately from a joint agreement by several top global clothing retailers and brands to demand better working conditions in Bangladesh. They include H&M, Zara, Tesco, Calvin Klein, and Izod. They have set a Wednesday deadline for all retailers to sign on to the agreement.

Last month's building collapse killed 1,127 people. Nearly 2,500 people were pulled alive from the rubble, including a 19 year-old girl who survived in the wreckage for 17 days. Bangladesh authorities have arrested nine people in connection with the collapse.

The government says it has since shut down 18 garment factories for safety reasons. It also plans to raise the minimum wage for garment workers and allow for the easier formation of labor unions.

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