Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 September 2014

Primark shock at Bangladesh tragedy

People look for survivors after an eight-story building with a floor occupied by Primark collapsed (AP)
Rescue workers use clothing to lower down survivors from the site of a building that collapsed in Savar (AP)
Rescuers carry a survivor out from the debris (AP)

Bosses at high street giant Primark said they are "shocked and saddened" to hear of the deaths of dozens of people following the collapse of an eight-storey building in Bangladesh.

It has emerged the budget clothing chain occupied a floor of the building and that workers were suppliers to the brand.

In a statement released on its website, a Primark spokesman said: "The company is shocked and deeply saddened by this appalling incident at Savar, near Dhaka, and expresses its condolences to all of those involved.

"Primark confirms that one of its suppliers occupied the second floor of the eight-storey building, which housed several suppliers to the garment industry making clothing for a number of brands.

"Primark has been engaged for several years with NGOs and other retailers to review the Bangladeshi industry's approach to factory standards. Primark will push for this review to also include building integrity.

"Meanwhile Primark's ethical trade team is at this moment working to collect information, assess which communities the workers come from, and to provide support where possible."

The death toll stands at 149 after searchers worked through the night.

Around 600 people had to be rescued from the building, located in the country's capital Dhaka.

Up to 2,000 people were working at the plant at the time of the collapse, the cause of which is as yet unknown.

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