| COPENHAGEN, June 25
COPENHAGEN, June 25 PWT Group, a user of the
clothing factory that collapsed in Bangladesh in April, and five
other Danish firms, have agreed to sign an international accord
on fire and safety in Bangladesh.
The accord was worked out and endorsed by several large
mainly European retailers in May after the Rana Plaza factory
collapsed on April 24 killing at least 1,129
Denmark said IC Companys, DK Company,
Bestseller, COOP Denmark, Danish Supermarket and PWT Group, with
its Texman and Wagner brands, had agreed to join retailers such
as Hennes & Mauritz, Inditex, PVH Corp
and Tesco Plc in endorsing the accord.
PWT Group, which had been using a supplier in Rana Plaza for
seven years, said the day after the collapse that, while it
checked working conditions at the factory, it could not be held
responsible for how it was built. It later said it planned to
offer financial help to victims' families.
"It is encouraging that several Danish companies today have
decided that they will sign the international agreement," Danish
Trade Minister Pia Olsen Dyr said in a statement.
The Rana Plaza building collapse followed a fire at the
Tazreen Fashion factory on the outskirts of Dhaka that killed
112 people in November 2012 and another incident at a factory in
January in which seven people died, compounding concerns about
worker safety and low wages in Bangladesh.
About 3.6 million people work in Bangladesh's garment
industry, making it the world's second-largest apparel exporter.
North American retailers including Wal-Mart Stores Inc
, Macy's Inc, Sears Holdings Corp, JC
Penney Co Inc and Gap Inc have declined to sign
the fire and safety initiative.
PWT Group Marketing Director Brian Borsting said the firm
didn't sign the accord sooner due to certain issues that needed
clarifying, without elaborating.
(Editing by Mark Potter)