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M&S to increase apparel sourcing from Bangladesh

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British retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) has decided to increase its apparel sourcing from Bangladesh.

The company has taken this step after observing Bangladesh apparel industry’s rapid growth and development in terms of safety, sustainability and its growing competence in making value-added products.

“Now, the owners are more proactive about protecting the environment, but previously they were not.

This is a big change in the garment sector of Bangladesh. M&S has no cap on sourcing from Bangladesh and we will source as much as possible,” said Shwapna Bhowmick, M&S’ Country Manager – Bangladesh while interacting with the scribes at her Dhaka office on Wednesday.

Bhowmick, who is the first from the country to take charge of M&S’s operations in any of the South Asian nations, also highlighted her desire to change the Bangladesh’s image in the world map.

“Bangladesh has a lot of green factories. Even M&S has been working with 12 green factories in the country,” she mentioned.

Alongside traditional basic garments, M&S has also started sourcing diversified value-added products from Bangladesh lately.

Earlier, value-added products used to be sourced from other destinations as Bangladeshi exporters were not capable of making them.

Today, the scenario has changed. Bangladesh is no longer just a source of basic garment items. The country is also a major hub for value-added products like formal dresses, men’s suits, formal blazers, etc.

The British retailer’s sourcing from the country was just US $ 5 million in 2016. The figures are expected to reach an astounding US $ 700 million-mark in the current fiscal.

According to Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data, M&S’s sourcing from Bangladesh has increased by at least 30 per cent year-on-year in the past three years.