Skip to navigationSkip to content

Here are the differences between the US and European retailer plans to make Bangladeshi factories safer

Reuters/Andrew Biraj
One of the Bangladesh factory disasters you might have missed: a fire that killed eight in Dhaka in May.
By Lily Kuo &
EuropePublished This article is more than 2 years old.

On July 10, 17 American retailers and clothing manufacturers—including Wal-Mart, Gap, and JC Penney—announced a pact to improve safety conditions at garment factories in Bangladesh. The initiative is seen as a rival to another safety accord finalized by over 70 retailers, mostly European, just days ago that’s considered stricter. (Here’s our handy visual explainer on how that plan works.) Both are attempts to prevent a repeat of the factory collapse in April that killed over 1,1000 Bangladeshi workers, mostly women.

The US pact calls for inspecting all its members’ suppliers in Bangladesh within a year, drawing up common safety standards within the next three months, and forming worker committees to which workers can report safety concerns without worrying about reprisals from managers. The European deal legally binds its members to help bear the costs of repairing and upgrading factories for better safety. Here’s a breakdown of how the two plans differ:

📬 Kick off each morning with coffee and the Daily Brief (BYO coffee).

By providing your email, you agree to the Quartz Privacy Policy.