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Green factories, circular economy key to sustainable growth in RMG sector

Published : Thursday, 21 December, 2023 at 12:00 AM  Count : 216

A report by Denmark-based Fashion Partnership Organization- 2019, Bangladesh exports 60 percent of its textile waste annually; but the county can reduce its 15 per cent demand for total cotton import by reusing its waste cotton, speakers said in a discussion in the city on Tuesday.  
They said demand for water in its textile industry will increase threefold compared to its internal demand by 2030. Under the circumstances, it is imperative to ensure the growth of circular economy for sustainable development in the apparel sector.

While presenting the keynote at a dialogue, Faisal Rabbi, Stakeholder Engagement & Public Affairs Manager, H&M, said 60 percent of GHG emission is coming from producing countries;  so to achieve net zero emission target by 2040, GHG reduction must happen in producing countries like Bangladesh, said a press release.

The Bangladesh government and the industry therefore need to align with the goals of fashion brands as they are not just goals set by the brands but a legal requirement for market access going forward.

The dialogue on Circularity, de-carbonization, and competitiveness in Bangladeshs apparel sector took place at a hotel in Gulshan in the capital.

LightCastle Partners, a prominent management consulting firm, and Policy Exchange Bangladesh, jointly organized the dialogue on Tuesday.

LightCastle Partners in collaboration with Policy Exchange has taken up an extensive programme titled Bunon 2030 to ascertain transformations in the apparel sector. As part of the plan, the dialogue was arranged to chalk out strategy and implementing processes in future.

While presenting for a deep dive workshop, Mrinmoy Sobhan, Business Consultant at LightCastle Partners, said the use of garment products is expected to reach 102 billion items across the world by 2030. It may increase the emission of greenhouse gases by up to 50 percent.

Bangladeshs apparel sector produces about 5.77 lakh tonnes of textile waste in a year. It imports raw materials worth $ 3.5 billion annually and at the same time exports high-quality garment jhuts.

Hence, the importance of circularity practices is increasing not only regarding the environmental issue in a competitive market but also in terms of economic consideration, he said.     

Dr. M Masrur Reaz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Policy Exchange Bangladesh, moderated the dialogue. BGMEA director Vidiya Amrit Khan said recycling has always been a part of Bangladesh in a non-systematic and informal way We need detailed waste management policy at local, national and international level to make best use of it.

Ariful Hoque, Director General of Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA), said recycled products also need to have enough competitive edge, otherwise consumers will not accept them.

There are over 200 industry-friendly apparel factories now in the country. It is imperative to give attention to the issue of reuse of textile waste for reducing carbon footprint.     
Mentionable that about 84 percent of Bangladeshs export earnings comes from the RMG sector. If a circular economy is adopted, Bangladesh may benefit economically.    
Fazlee Shamim Ehsan, Vice President of Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA), Abdullah Hil Rakib, Managing Director of Team Group, Dr. Zaki Uz Zaman, Bangladesh Country Representative of the UNDP and Kazi Faisal Bin Seraj, Country Representative of Asia Foundation, among others, spoke.    

On behalf of LightCastle Partners Zahedul Amin, Business Consultant Samiha Anwar, and other officials spoke.

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