The owners of only 66 business entities like industries, factories and establishments out of around 23,579 across the country have deposited around Tk127 crore to the Labour Welfare Foundation Fund, a contributory fund of the government, in last 9 years.
Most of the owners of the business organisations and factories are not interested to deposit the amount to the fund from their net profits following the provisions of the 'Bangladesh Labour Welfare Foundation Fund' law.
According to the law, it is mandatory for the business entity owners to expend 5 per cent of total profit for workers and other employees of the factories of establishments except the management or managerial officials. The profits would be deposited to the account of the factories 'labour welfare fund'.
Of the profits, 10 per cent will be transferred to the labour welfare foundation fund - which is 0.5 per cent of total profit of the entities - within next 45 days, while the rest 90 per cent profit will remain in the Factory Labour Welfare Fund account to be distributed among workers and employees equally except management or managerial officials.
However, the law also has a mandatory provision that said, "The owners of export-oriented garment factories to give 0.03 per cent of their total export earnings, which would be approximately US$8 million per year, to the BLWF Fund.
When contacted, State Minister for Labour and Employment Mujibul Haque Chunnu told the Daily Observer on Wednesday that though there is a compulsion, they have not paid attention to collect the fund from the establishments earlier.
"They were trying to create awareness among the establishment owners. The owners were given enough times, now the government is planning to enforce the law strictly as more funds can be collected. The fund will be used for the welfare of the poor workers and employees," he added.
The foundation was formed through enactment of Bangladesh Workers Welfare Foundation Act 2006 aiming at helping destitute workers, dependents of dead or injured workers in the formal and informal sectors.
The BLWF fund is being operated by a Joint Secretary of the Labour and Employment Ministry who is functioning as an ex-officio Director General of the Foundation.
According to BLWF data, only 66 business entities out of registered 23,579 have deposited the share of their profits to the fund until April 20 (Wednesday) this year.
A delegation of local electronic goods producer Walton Group on Wednesday deposited its share of profit, Tk3.09 crore, to the BLWF fund meeting State Minister for Labour Mujibul Haque Chunnu in his office at Secretariat. Though the company has been running its business in the country for a long time, they have deposited the share of profit for the first time.
Among others, Reneta Ltd and Reneta Agro, Fu-Wang Ceramics, Coats Bangladesh, Nexus Sweaters and Nexus Fashions, Bengal Glass and Bengal Packages, ACS Textiles, British American Tobacco, Nestle Bangladesh, Lafarge Surma, TM Textiles, Unilever, Singer, Robi Axiata, Reckitt Benckiser, RAK Ceramics, GrameenPhone, Huawei Technologies, Linde Bangladesh, Crown Cement, Essential Drugs, Berger Paints and Berger Beckers, Jenson and Nicholson, Bata Shoes, Heidelberg Cement, Syngenta, Karnafuli Fertiliser, Marico Bangladesh, Samsung R&D, APM Global Logistics, ACI Godrej Agrovet, Deshbandhu Polymer, Sun Pharma, Zuelling Pharma, Hwa Well Textiles, Holcim Cement, Asian Consumer Care, NDB Capital, Maersk Bangladesh, Accenture Communication Infrastructure, Premier LP Gas, Matin Spinning Mills, Pedelite Chemicals, ACME Laboratories, Rahim Afroz Battery and Rahim Afroz Accumulator, Bangladesh Cables, Renweeck Joggeswar, GE Health Care, American Life Insurance, Eastern Housing, IT Consultants, Pran-RFL Group, DHL Global, Padma Oil, BKash, Star Ceramics, Parvetry Van, APL Bangladesh, Popular Pharma, American and Ifard and IFAD Autos have deposited their shares to the fund.