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Around 100 Yangon factories resume operation


Date: 2020-10-14

News Type: Marketing News


Around 100 garment and bag factories started reopening on October 12, according to the Hlaing Tharyar Industrial Zone Management Committee.

“The government and the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry issued announcements to allow factories to reopen. Factories will face action if they do not comply with COVID-19 restrictions,” said U Aung Kyaw Oo, executive officer of the committee.

Workers cannot yet be brought back, so most factories are still closed, but many will reopen in the coming days, he said.

According to a notice by the Ministry of Health and Sports released on October 10, garment and bag factories, workshops and small and medium-sized enterprises will be allowed to reopen after obtaining approval from the Central Committee for Prevention, Control and Treatment of COVID-19.

This will involve passing Yangon regional government checks on whether the businesses meet the necessary health standards.

The ministry announced last month that Yangon Region, except for Cocokyun township, would be under a stay-at-home order from September 21 to try to curb the spread of COVID-19. Under the order, factories were forced to close and workers to stay at home through October 7 and only essential businesses were allowed to stay open. Last week, the government extended the order until October 21.

Workplaces found not complying with health regulations would be suspended and required to make modifications before getting permission to reopen.

Factories could apply for inspection with the Yangon Region government, said the letter.

Charmin Garment Factory labour leader Daw Thinzar Htet, who resumed work on October 12, said, “Most of the factories that reopened don’t require face masks, and have crowded canteens and 30 or 50 people on their shuttles. You don’t even need to inspect the factory. Just stand by the gates and you can see that social distancing rules are not being followed. It is really worrisome.”

The Industrial Workers Federation of Myanmar has told workers that they can report factories that are ignoring the health standards to the industrial zone committee, township administrator, township labour office and labour unions for government action.


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