The Myanmar Dilemma. Can the garment industry deliver decent jobs for workers in Myanmar?
After years of sanctions, trade with Myanmar (formerly Burma) has started to flow. Low wages and favourable trade conditions are luring garment production from the region to this fragile democracy. Big and lesser known European brands are tempted to join in with this ‘race to the bottom’, unhindered by poor working conditions. In a report from February 2017, “The Myanmar Dilemma”, the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) documents in detail how garments made in Myanmar for brands including H&M, C&A and Primark are produced for very low wages. Researchers found that long working hours and child labour are no exception in this industry. In the development of industrial zones, land rights have also been violated.