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Walmart Asks Bangladesh Gov’t To Shutter Factories

Walmart released a statement calling for the Bangladeshi government to halt production at Stitch Tone Apparels in Chittagong, Bangladesh, and to inspect Nassa Group’s Liz Apparels Ltd factory complex in Dhaka.

Walmart reported finding structural issues at a factory next to Stitch Tone called Dresswell Ltd. Dresswell, which is not part of Walmart’s supply chain, “appeared unstable and could cause a hazard” for workers at Stitch Tone, according to the statement. In addition to pushing for an investigation of the factories, Walmart has pulled its business from Stitch Tone and advised the owner to cease production voluntarily.

The inspections also found cracks in the wall at Liz Apparels. Walmart notified factory owners, the BGMEA, and government inspectors.

“The government of Bangladesh did the responsible thing last week by closing factories believed to be dangerous,” Rajan Kamalanathan, vice president of ethical sourcing for Walmart, said in a statement. “We call on them to show the same leadership in the Stitch Tone Apparels and Liz Apparels cases, and take any actions necessary to ensure safe conditions.”

Walmart has hired Bureau Veritas to conduct structural, fire, and electrical safety as part of an expanded inspection process launched last month. The new inspections are in response to the Rana Plaza collapse, where cracked walls led to a building failure that killed more than 1,100 people. Walmart had clothes being made in that building, according to reports.

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