Global fashion chains stop placing orders in Myanmar

Myanmar’s garment workers demand that the international clothing and fashion industry pays attention to the current violence in the country and supports their fight against the junta and for democracy, but the companies are just cutting orders.

Myanmar is one of the low-wage countries where many international fashion retailers are having their clothing and footwear produced. The February 1 coup by the military has changed a lot for them as garment workers went on strike and the whole supply chain was interrupted by the civil unrest which caused factory closures.

Garment workers in Myanmar, who make clothing for brands including H&M, Zara, Primark, Muji, Next and Bestseller, have been at the heart of the anti-junta protests and even some of their leaders.

“This is the time for brands to help the workers of Myanmar, because our country needs democracy,” Ma Moe Sandar Myint, chairwoman of the Federation of Garment Workers of Myanmar, who has been leading garment workers in the protests against the military coup, said.

Employment for 900,000 people

Myanmar’s garment industry employs about 900,000 people and accounts for nearly 30 per cent of all Myanmar exports, worth more than $5 billion. The goods are manufactured by local subcontractors of the international chains.

However, the fashion brands, already under pressure from diminishing retail sales amid the Covid-19 pandemic, are not so much into an anti-coup campaign, but are rather cutting down on procuring clothing from Myanmar.

H&M, Benetton, Primark, Next stop placing orders

Sweden’s H&M and Italy’s Benetton Group have already paused placing orders in Myanmar earlier in March, while Irish fashion retailer Primark followed a few days ago, joined by UK-based fashion chain Next.

On March 29, Italian clothing retailer OVS said it would keep “limited presence” in Myanmar but would stop its business with suppliers acting in a discriminatory way towards workers involved in rallies against the country’s junta.

Britain’s Marks & Spencer, which sources about three per cent of its clothing from Myanmar, said it is continuing with its booked orders but is keeping future orders under review.



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Myanmar’s garment workers demand that the international clothing and fashion industry pays attention to the current violence in the country and supports their fight against the junta and for democracy, but the companies are just cutting orders. Myanmar is one of the low-wage countries where many international fashion retailers are having their clothing and footwear produced. The February 1 coup by the military has changed a lot for them as garment workers went on strike and the whole supply chain was interrupted by the civil unrest which caused factory closures. Garment workers in Myanmar, who make clothing for brands including...

Myanmar’s garment workers demand that the international clothing and fashion industry pays attention to the current violence in the country and supports their fight against the junta and for democracy, but the companies are just cutting orders.

Myanmar is one of the low-wage countries where many international fashion retailers are having their clothing and footwear produced. The February 1 coup by the military has changed a lot for them as garment workers went on strike and the whole supply chain was interrupted by the civil unrest which caused factory closures.

Garment workers in Myanmar, who make clothing for brands including H&M, Zara, Primark, Muji, Next and Bestseller, have been at the heart of the anti-junta protests and even some of their leaders.

“This is the time for brands to help the workers of Myanmar, because our country needs democracy,” Ma Moe Sandar Myint, chairwoman of the Federation of Garment Workers of Myanmar, who has been leading garment workers in the protests against the military coup, said.

Employment for 900,000 people

Myanmar’s garment industry employs about 900,000 people and accounts for nearly 30 per cent of all Myanmar exports, worth more than $5 billion. The goods are manufactured by local subcontractors of the international chains.

However, the fashion brands, already under pressure from diminishing retail sales amid the Covid-19 pandemic, are not so much into an anti-coup campaign, but are rather cutting down on procuring clothing from Myanmar.

H&M, Benetton, Primark, Next stop placing orders

Sweden’s H&M and Italy’s Benetton Group have already paused placing orders in Myanmar earlier in March, while Irish fashion retailer Primark followed a few days ago, joined by UK-based fashion chain Next.

On March 29, Italian clothing retailer OVS said it would keep “limited presence” in Myanmar but would stop its business with suppliers acting in a discriminatory way towards workers involved in rallies against the country’s junta.

Britain’s Marks & Spencer, which sources about three per cent of its clothing from Myanmar, said it is continuing with its booked orders but is keeping future orders under review.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

$
Personal Info

Donation Total: $10.00

 

 

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