BEYOND THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG: BANGLADESH'S FORGOTTEN APPAREL WORKERS

2016

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Building on previous research, this report used large scale data analysis to document the actual number of apparel factories in Bangladesh. While global apparel brands maintained that they only sourced from about 1,100 factories in the country, data showed that there were more than 7,000 factories, many of them producing for the export market. Extensive interviews with smaller factory owners illustrated that most factories produce for both the domestic and export markets through subcontracting arrangements with the larger factories that contract directly with global apparel brands. The report’s findings were highlighted in an episode of John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight, as well as the documentary, The True Cost.

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Cover image by Bishawjit Das