Primark Pays Rana Plaza Factory Collapse Victims Extra $10m
Primark Pays Rana Plaza Factory Collapse Victims Extra $10mReuters

Primark is pledging to pay Rana Plaza disaster survivors and the victims' families an extra $10m in compensation after the factory collapse killed more than 1,100 people.

Primark revealed in a statement that it will stump up the extra amount, on top of the $2m (£1.2m, €1.4m) it paid, in in short-term financial support and food distribution.

Around 90% of the extra compensation paid out will go directly to 580 workers of its supplier in Rana Plaza or their dependants, and another $1m to the fund.

Last month, Amsterdam-based Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC), a lobbying group for better conditions in the garment industry, launched a major campaign calling on all clothing brands who source from Bangladesh to immediately pay into the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund.

The fund was established to compensate the survivors and victims' families, and run by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

The group called on major international brands Benetton, KiK, Primark and Children's Place, who were sourcing from factories in Rana Plaza at the time of the collapse or in the recent past, to make significant contributions to the fund.

So far, clothing brands such as Primark, El Corte Ingles, Mascot, Mango, Inditex and Loblaw have publicly committed to donating to the fund.

About $40m is required to ensure all those injured and the families of those killed are fairly compensated, the group said.

"Compensation efforts to date have been completely haphazard, unequal, unpredictable and non-transparent, and have left large groups of victims with nothing," said Ineke Zeldenrust of the CCC.

"The collapse of Rana Plaza is symptomatic of an industry wide problem, and we encourage the entire industry to make generous contributions."

The harsh and unsafe working conditions in Bangladesh's garment factories that employ about 3.6 million people were tragically highlighted after the collapse of the eight-storey Rana Plaza building on 24 April 2013, killing more than 1,100 people.

In addition, the sector has suffered numerous fires, including a November 2012 blaze that killed 112 workers.

Bangladesh is the world's second-largest garments exporter behind China.

Following the accidents, authorities in Bangladesh and clothing companies, especially in the US and Europe, have pledged to improve safety standards at the country's factories. Europe and the US account for 60% and 23% of clothes exports from Bangladesh, respectively.