Three more garment factories from Bangladesh achieved international recognition for being green, raising the total to 171, yet brands and retailers worldwide are still unwilling to pay premium prices for apparel items produced by these suppliers.
These three garments have achieved platinum-rated Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC).
Among these, two garments are from Asulia – Sharaf Apparels Washing & Dyeing Industries and Orbitex Knitwear and other one, Fatullah apparels is from Narayanganj. Moreover, according to data from the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), 53 garments are rated platinum, 104 gold, and ten silver; meanwhile, four garments simply gained certifications from Bangladeshi organizations. However, further 550 manufacturers have registered with the USGBC and are on their way to carrying LEED certifications.
Among the top 10 greenest factories, nine are located in Bangladesh, which makes Bangladesh the world champions in producing eco-friendly clothing. Also, in total 41 out of 50 of the greenest garment factories are located in Bangladesh.
After the Tazreen Fashions fire and the fall of the Rana Plaza building, Local apparel makers started focusing on fabricating green garment factories in Bangladesh. It brightens the sector’s image in front of the international communities. But unfortunately, global retailers and brands are still unwilling to pay a premium price for products derived from green factories.
Fazlee Shamim Ehsan, Proprietor of Fatullah Apparels, who is the most recent recipient of this highest-rated platinum certification, quotes that, “Buyers are not obliged to pay premium prices as they do not suggest for construction of green factories.”
According to BGMEA, Formerly another Narayanganj-based knitwear factory: Plummy Fashions, was the world’s greenest knitwear factory in the world, MR. Ehsan spends around BDT 30 crore for his new unit. Due to his green factory, he will be able to negotiate better with buyers, as he will be more compliant with laws and protect the environment.
MR. Ehsan also said, “We are showing our responsibility with construction of green factories. Now is the time to show the buyers’ responsibility to pay more” he engaged 600 workers and ships knitted jackets, hoodies, and nightwear worth $6 million a year.
MR. Hoque also mentiones that, “Many international retailers and brands pay better prices for the use of organic cotton. In the future, the buyers may also pay better prices for products from green factory buildings.”
BGMEA President Faruque Hassan said, “Green factories were more likely to receive work orders, even at times when there were not much for offer from buyers in the first place”
To encourage more garments owner to go green, the government is also providing facilities to green garment factory owners – the corporate tax for green factories is 10 percent, whereas non-green garments are paying 12 percent tax.