Pakistan’s garment workers lost over Rs13.5 billion in ‘wage theft’ during Covid-19: report – Business & Finance

Pakistan’s garment staff suffered ‘salary robbery’ to the music of over Rs13.5 billion all through the Covid-19 pandemic, said the Asia Flooring Salary Alliance (AFWA) in its newest document titled, ‘Cash Heist : COVID 19 Salary Robbery in International Garment Provide Chains’.

The AFWA was once based in 2007 because the Asian-led world labour and social alliance throughout garment generating nations (corresponding to India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Bangladesh) and client areas (USA and Europe).

It performed a survey of 605 staff from 50 garment factories in Pakistan, situated throughout 3 districts in Punjab and Sindh – Faisalabad, Lahore, and Karachi.

It discovered that salary robbery was once the principal characteristic of the Covid-19 disaster for garment staff in Pakistan.

“Salary robbery was once the principal characteristic of the Covid-19 disaster for garment staff in Pakistan,” said the detailed document. “Our survey estimates
point out that 244,510 garment staff throughout 50 factories in Pakistan have been denied 85.08 million USD as wages because of order cancellations, non-payment for present orders, and different irresponsible practices by means of manufacturers all through the pandemic.”

The document stated that salary robbery peaked in April 2020 however staff constantly skilled salary robbery during the 12 months, and neatly into 2021. Alternatively, the magnitude of salary robbery declined against the top of the 12 months with an building up in manufacturing because of govt make stronger and leisure of Covid-19 lockdown-related restrictions.

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The document added that staff reported an general salary robbery of 29% in 2020, with a pointy decline in wages by means of 61-69% all through the entire lockdown length and 26% all through the partial lockdown length.

“Wages by no means recovered to the pre-pandemic ranges in 2020 as staff endured to revel in salary robbery of round 5% all through the postlockdown length.”

Gender disparity

The document additional stated that wages and dealing stipulations are formed by means of pre-existing inequalities within the labour marketplace within the type of gender, age, and contractual standing.

“All the way through the pre-pandemic length, manufacturers took benefit of those disparities to systematically underpay susceptible segments of the group of workers and flexibilise employment family members.”

It stated that Pakistan has one of the vital very best male-female disparities in garment sector income in Asia.

“As in step with our survey, 66% of the informal staff have been ladies, indicating the prime incidence of ladies in informal jobs. Informal staff are a particularly deprived body of workers as they earn decrease wages and feature extra restricted get entry to to social safety advantages and employment safety, in comparison to common staff. The double burden of task lack of confidence and patriarchal norms accentuated the precarity of ladies staff all through the Covid-19
disaster, as they confronted upper salary robbery and an exacerbation of social inequalities.”

The document stated that ladies misplaced 43% in their wages, whilst on reasonable, males suffered a complete salary lack of 27% over 2020. When males suffered salary lack of 68% and 56% in April and Would possibly, respectively, ladies misplaced 80% and 90% in their wages all through those months.

Even all through the partial lockdown level from June to October, whilst males suffered 20% salary loss, feminine staff misplaced 65% in their wages, discovered the document.

It additionally said that ladies had much less possibilities of getting reemployed than males as factories reopened. “Most girls staff who have been
laid off or terminated grew to become to casual home-based paintings or home paintings to feed their households.”

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