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December 07, 2006

Make Trade Fair

A new campaign was recently started by Oxfam Hong Kong: Let's turn the garment industry inside out - we have the right to know!

In a new research "Transparency Report: How Hong Kong Garment Companies Can Improve Public Reporting of their Labour Standards", Oxfam Hong Kong assesses how well Hong Kong top apparel companies* are reporting to the public on labour standards and practices in their supply chain ,
and finds that all these companies are not providing the public sufficient information.

The 16 garment companies included in the research are: Esprit, Giordano , PMTD Limited, Moiselle, Texwinca, Bossini, Heroic Rendezvous, Youth Grace International Limited, I.TLimited, Veeko, LaiSun, Goldlion, G2000, Chickeeduck, U-Right, F.C.K.

Oxfam Hong Kong urges these garment companies to demonstrate a commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility through:

1. Providing consumers with sufficient information on labour
practices in their supply chains;

2. Committing to ethical labour standards in the supply chain at the
highest level of corporate management and ensuring labour standards are
integrated throughout the company;

3. Protecting and promoting labour rights, and thereby contributing
to poverty reduction.

You can join this campaign now! Read the full-report and sign the online
petition at:


Today, december 7, The Canadian "Ethical Trading Action Group" released
their second Transparency Report Card comparing public reporting on
labour standards compliance by 30 top apparel retailers and brands
selling clothes in the Canadian market, including Levi Strauss, Nike,
adidas, H&M, Mountain Equipment Co-op, Roots, La Senza, Reitmans and 22

"Revealing Clothing" assesses companies on the basis of their policies
and programs to achieve and maintain compliance with recognized
international labour standards in factories around the world where their
products are made, and the steps they are taking to thoroughly,
effectively and transparently communicate these efforts to the public.

The Report Card shows that over the past year, some major brands and
retailers have improved reporting on labour standards compliance.
Canadian companies Mountain Equipment Co-op, Mark’s Work Wearhouse and
the Hudson’s Bay Company all improved their scores in this year’s
rating. But despite improvements in reporting there is still a long way
to go to improve actual labour conditions in apparel factories worldwide.

Leading companies have publicly expressed a willingness to discuss root
causes of persistent labour rights abuses in their supply chains. More
companies are reporting training programs for factory management and
other efforts to change persistent bad practices. But ETAG’s study shows
that companies are less willing to discuss how their own business model
of ever-lower prices and highly-mobile production might be causing these

Supply factories receive negative incentives when retailers and brands
shift production from factories that have made improvements in labour
practices to other countries with lower labour costs, or ask factory
owners to meet higher standards while simultaneously demanding lower prices.

There is also a need for companies to engage on a consistent basis with
factory workers, NGOs, faith groups, and trade unions in developing
sustainable solutions. ETAG found that fourteen of the thirty companies
surveyed reported engagement with NGOs and trade unions, up from only
five in last year’s report. However, with a few exceptions, most
companies are not fully engaging factory workers in labour standards
compliance efforts.

A complete copy of ETAG’s 2006 Transparency Report Card or an Executive
Summary can be downloaded now from: www.maquilasolidarity.org

Posted by cat at 12:11 PM