January 11, 2024

Supplier Briefing #3

These Supplier Briefings are designed for all factories/suppliers listed by Pakistan Accord signatory brands. They include updates on key developments under the Pakistan Accord, along with information on upcoming events, guidance materials, and resources for suppliers.

We encourage all suppliers/factories covered by the Pakistan Accord to read these briefings regularly and to share their recommendations, ideas, and suggestions by contacting us via pakistan.factories@internationalaccord.org.

This briefing includes updates on:

  • Number of signatory brands, covered Factories
  • Program Rollout: Pakistan Accord Building Standard, first safety inspections
  • Implementation: Accord presence in Pakistan, Pakistan Accord Team
  • New International Accord

Number of Signatory Brands and Covered Factories

At the time of writing this briefing, more than 90 global brands sourcing textiles and garments from Pakistan have signed the Pakistan Accord, thereby committing to work with their suppliers to ensure workplace safety. As stated by one of the Accord’s recent signatories to the Pakistan Accord, ASOS:

Due to the Pakistan program in place, ASOS has now started scoping Pakistan as a sourcing region as it was imperative for us to have a credible programme like Accord in place. We look forward to working together to create a safer working environment and empower workers.

The Pakistan Accord signatory brands are headquartered in 17 countries across Europe, Turkey, the USA, Australia, Hong Kong, and Japan, and include some of the world’s largest clothing brands and retailers. Collectively, these companies source over US$2.5 billion worth of goods from approximately 500 suppliers in Pakistan.

Program Rollout

Pakistan Accord Building Standard

Following extensive consultations with relevant stakeholders including the Pakistani Government, engineering experts, and academics over the past few months, the Pakistan Accord Building Standard (Standard) was finalised.

This Standard establishes minimum life-safety criteria to reduce danger to life from fire, structural, electrical, and boiler hazards as well as safety risks relating to the storage, use, and handling of hazardous substances. The application of this Standard is intended for new and existing garment and textile factories supplying Pakistan Accord company signatories. An independent Chief Safety Officer and team of engineers of the Pakistan Accord will assess Accord factory compliance with this Standard and produce reports of the safety hazards they identify.

The Standard was launched across a series of two webinars on 27 September and 4 October 2023 during which factories supplying Pakistan Accord signatory companies were invited to participate, engage with experts, and ask technical questions about the Standard.

Read the Pakistan Accord Building Standard here.

View the recorded online launch here.

First Safety Inspections Under the Pakistan Accord

The Pakistan Accord started a first round of initial inspections at factories supplying Pakistan Accord brands in Lahore and Karachi in October 2023. These initial inspections mark a significant milestone in the rollout of the Pakistan Accord.

The inspections were conducted as stipulated under the Pakistan Accord at four new facilities and four facilities that were part of the Accord pilot inspection program pilot safety assessments conducted between November and December 2022.

The Accord worked closely with the participating factories to support their preparation for the inspections. The support provided included meetings with Accord technical experts, opportunities to clarify any technical questions, and a detailed briefing document outlining the agenda for the day of inspection and actions where the factory’s support is needed.

Throughout the inspection process, these factories demonstrated commitment to ensuring workplace safety, receptiveness to feedback, preparedness, and cooperation with our engineering teams. We look forward to our ongoing collaboration with these factories and their Accord brand customers to advance workplace health and safety.

The Pakistan Accord is continuing its rollout of the inspections program in the Province of Sindh and preparing for the roll-out of inspections in the Province of Punjab at the start of 2024.

Read more about the first batch of factories inspected under the Pakistan Accord.


Accord Presence in Pakistan

As of September 2023, the International Accord BV, established to implement the Pakistan Accord for Health and Safety in the Textile and Garment Industry (Pakistan Accord) incorporated a private limited subsidiary company in Pakistan in the name of Health and Safety Accord Pvt. Ltd. This private company is undertaking the activities on behalf of Accord signatory companies and following the provisions of the Pakistan Accord, which include fire, electrical, structural, and boiler safety inspections, developing and monitoring the implementation of Corrective Actions Plans (CAPs),  the implementation of workplace safety training and complaints program, and a local capacity building program.

Pakistan Accord Team

The Pakistan Accord is in the process of building local teams in Karachi and Lahore that will ensure the effective implementation of the Accord’s programs and smooth coordination with suppliers.

Most notably,  the Pakistan Accord  has recently recruited for the following positions :

  • Country Manager
  • Chief Safety Officer
  • Chief Complaints Officer
  • Fire, Electrical, and Structural Safety Engineers
  • Remediation Department Manager

The Pakistan Accord operations are also supported by international engineering consultants and the International Accord Secretariat.

New International Accord

Negotiations between representatives of global brands and trade union signatories to the International Accord on Health and Safety in the Textile and Garment Industry (International Accord) have resulted in a new agreement that reaffirms their commitment to enhancing health and safety throughout the supply chains of brand signatories in Bangladesh, Pakistan, and other countries in the future.

Brands and trade unions have renewed their commitments for an extended three-year term, with an automatic renewal of another three years, making it the longest Accord commitment to date. This new version of the International Accord took effect on November 1, 2023. Additionally, the brands and trade unions finalised a new agreement to further their efforts in enhancing health and safety within the Bangladeshi garment industry through the RMG Sustainability Council (RSC).

How does the Pakistan Accord relate to the new International Accord? The Pakistan Accord, which was signed in January 2023 for three years, will continue as a Country-Specific Safety Program (CSSP) of the International Accord.

Read the International Accord, Bangladesh Safety Program, And Pakistan Accord Agreements here.

Read the statement about the renewal of the International Accord here.

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