“If our workers don’t die from coronavirus, they’d die of starvation.”
This is the stark assessment of how the pandemic is impacting the clothing industry from garment factory owner, Vijay Mahtaney, the chairman of Ambattur Fashion India.
In normal times, Vijay Mahtaney and his partners Amit Mahtaney and Shawn Islam employ a total of 18,000 workers in three countries – Bangladesh, India and Jordan. But the outbreak has forced them to shut down the majority of the business, with just one factory, in Dhaka, partially operational.
Coronavirus lockdowns aren’t the only thing affecting their ability to pay their workers. They say their main problem is unreasonable demands from big clients – mainly in the US and the UK.
“Some brands are showing a true sense of partnership and high level of ethics in trying to ensure at least enough cash flow to pay workers,” Amit Mahtaney, the chief executive of Tusker Apparel Jordan,