Fair Wear builds stakeholder network in Myanmar

FWF’s Koen Oosterom recently visited Myanmar to start building a firm stakeholder network in the local garment sector. Myanmar is becoming increasingly important as a garment production country.  

Koen met with several FWF stakeholders; he visited suppliers to FWF brands, local NGOs, trade unions, the ILO and the Dutch embassy. He was able to get a good picture of the local garment sector. ‘We now have a better sense of active stakeholders and current problems in the garment industry’, he says.

Repression of union members

At present, there are approximately 350 garment factories in Myanmar, employing over 200,000 workers, of which an estimated 90% are women. These factories face high risks for violations to labour rights including low wages, long working hours, repression of union members and strike leaders, and child labour.

FWF has seen a slow but steady increase in the number of factories in Myanmar that FWF members source from. Currently 8 FWF members are sourcing from the country. In 2015 FWF published a list of factories in Myanmar that supply members of Fair Wear Foundation.
Members that are considering or are already placing orders in Myanmar are required to share their due diligence process with FWF and implement additional, country-specific measures to support the implementation of decent labour conditions.

Fair Wear Foundation is planning to visit Myanmar at least three times per year.