JICA to provide assistance for making vulnerable RMG buildings safe

United News of Bangladesh . Dhaka

The Japanese government has taken an initiative to make vulnerable building of the country’s garments factories safe for the RMG workers through conducting retrofitting, a technology to make vulnerable building jolt resistant.
‘Japanese technology and experience to make building earthquake resistance can help Bangladesh to strengthen its vulnerable RMG buildings for avoiding any tragic incident like Rana plaza in future,’ Japan International Cooperation.
Agency senior representative Hiroyuki Tomita said in a seminar in a city hotel on Saturday.
The project capacity development of natural disaster resistant techniques of construction and retrofitting for public buildings, implemented by public works department with technical support of JICA organised the seminar titled ‘development of safer building: overcoming the tragedy of Rana Plaza incident’.
The JICA senior official said the Japanese experts had already started their work to do retrofit to two RMG factories initially and the JICA would implement a large project soon to cover more vulnerable RMG buildings of the country.
In a presentation JICA assistant programme officer Kaniz Fatema said after tragic incident of Rana plaza, JICA took a programme titled ‘RMG sector safe environment project’ and created a Tk 100 crore fund with the Bangladesh Bank for financing the RMG owners to make their building safe for the workers.
In another presentation, JICA expert team leader Fumio Kaneko said there was a concept that retrofitting was very expensive and it was not viable for economy like Bangladesh. But it is totally wrong. Usually it only costs 10-30 per cent of new construction.
PWD chief engineer Md Kabir Ahmed Bhuiyan spoke as chief guest while CNCRP project director Md Ahsan Habib gave the welcome speech.
JICA expert deputy team leader J Matsuo, Yuko Nakagawa of JET, professor Y Nakano of Tokyo University, professor M Maeda and professor M Ubaura of Tohoku University and former CNCRP PD M Sikder made separate presentations in two technical sessions.

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