The Weakest Link in the Global Supply Chain: The Pandemic’s Affect on Bangladesh’s Garment Workers

As the coronavirus spread across the world in early 2020 and a lockdown in Bangladesh became inevitable, businesses were forced to respond quickly to the evolving situation.

The report “The Weakest Link in the Supply Chain - How the Pandemic is Affecting Bangladesh’s Garment Workers” is drawn from in-depth interviews conducted between October 2020 and February 2021 with senior executives from international brands, Bangladeshi suppliers, representatives of the international civil society, and Bangladeshi labor activists.

It seeks to understand the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the industry and the workers, and it proposes changes to policies and practices that can lead to long-term changes that would benefit global retailers, suppliers, and ultimately workers themselves. As Bangladesh’s second lockdown is underway, the findings offer a cautionary tale on how brands and supply chains should respond.

This panel discussion organized by The Subir & Malini Chowdhury Center for Bangladesh Studies and the Institute for South Asia Studies focuses on this report and is moderated by Prof. Dorothée Baumann-Pauly.

Speakers

  • Sanchita Banerjee Saxena, Director, Subir and Malini Chowdhury Center for Bangladesh Studies; Executive Director, Institute for South Asia Studies; Lecturer, Responsible Business, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley;
  • Salil Tripathi, Senior Advisor Global Issues, Institute for Human Rights and Business;
  • Ayesha Barenblat, Founder & CEO, ReMake;
  • Sadaf Saaz Siddiqi, Director, Sidko Apparels Ltd

Report - The Weakest Link in the Global Supply Chains: How the Pandemic is Affecting Bangladesh’s Garment Workers

Cover of the report “The Weakest Link in the Global Supply Chain”