"Exports in textile and garment sector can be enhanced, reducing the cost of production by adopting preventive measures which will ensure Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) of workers at workplaces.
We should develop a new culture of decent work improving working environment, evolving sustainable strategies and policies for the betterment of both labour and employer community.
The labour and human resource department is focusing on OSH as a future strategy to improve compliance on standards and increase profitability of the businesses."
Commissioner Punjab Employees Social Security Institution (PESSI) Saqib Manan stated this on Tuesday while addressing the inaugural session of "Return on Prevention" conference focusing on costs and benefits of investment in occupational safety and health in Pakistan textile and garment sector.
Additional Secretary Labour & Human Resource Dr Sohail Shahzad, First Secretary Development Cooperation German Embassy, Dr Jurgen Zoll, Principal Advisor GIZ Romina Kochius, Australian Moderator Jillian Hamilton, Director Labour Dauod Abdullah, Programme Coordinator Shoukat Niazi, representatives of workers and employers, labour leaders, APTMA, Home Net Pakistan and related departments attended the conference.
Addressing the conference as chief guest on behalf of Punjab Minister Labour and Human Resource Ansar Majeed Khan, Commissioner PESSI Saqib Manan said the Punjab government fully recognizes the significance of augmenting development allocations to less-developed districts which have mostly been lagging behind regarding Multi Dimensional Poverty Index (MPI) in the province in order to achieve the sustainable development goals. Employers will have to invest on prevention side for safety of the labourers rather than spending on their rehabilitation which costs comparatively more.
The Punjab government is keen in exploring different perspectives in formal and informal sectors by introducing latest research and technologies for prevention of labour community from diseases and accidents at workplaces.
Pakistan was granted GSP+ status by the European Union in January 2014 and the Punjab government is taking concrete measures to hold this status by adopting international labour standards improving decent work by revamping transparent online labour inspections.