Leather industry not affected by strikes14 August 2002
Leather manufacturers in Bangladesh have made an agreement with their employees that strikes called on political grounds will not affect the production of the tanneries and other allied industrial set ups. This is according to Syed Manzur Elahi, chairman of Apex Tannery Ltd, the biggest tannery in Bangladesh. This practice has been maintained for the past 15 years. The agreement of the pay and facilities to the workers of tanneries and other leathergoods factories is reviewed every two years and takes into consideration the cost of living and other problems. He said that usually the trade union of tanneries are controlled by communists who are educated and do not create problems for their employers. The agreement of good working from both the sides is applicable to all tanneries in Dhaka as 95% tanneries are presently working in Dhaka only, while the rest of Bangladesh has 5 to 10% of tanneries outside Dhaka in Chittagong etc. Now the government has decided to shift the tanneries in Dhaka to the countryside. The Prime Minister recently announced that leather would be one of the few thrust industries for which her government would give 15% cash subsidy to promote exports and compete with the adjoining countries in the international market.