Stakeholders collaboration, innovative business model stressed for transition to circular economy in Bangladesh’s textile and garment industry


On September 3, speakers at a panel discussion stressed the need for a collaborative approach of the industry stakeholders, an innovative business model, and a financial support mechanism to foster a circular industrial ecosystem in order to drive the transition of Bangladesh’s RMG industry to a circular economy.

The discussion was as a part of a dialogue titled “Switch to Upstream Circularity: Pre-consumer Textile Waste in Bangladesh”. This event was organized under the Switch to Circular Economy Value Chains project (SWITCH2CE), co-funded by the European Union and the Government of Finland. SWITCH2CE is led by United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), in collaboration with Chatham House, Circle Economy, and European Investment Bank, and supports the switch to circularity in selected global value chains.

Dishan Karunaratne, Chief Representative of Bangladesh & Pakistan at BESTSELLER; Dr. M. Masrur Reaz, CEO, Policy Exchange; Mohammed Zahidullah; CSO, DBL Group; Md. Shahidullah Azim, Vice President, BGMEA; and Syed Mahbubur Rahman, Managing Director & CEO, MTB, BD took part in the panel discussion on “Enabling a circular industrial ecosystem by an innovative business model”.

Moderated by Shams Mahmud, Managing Director of Shasha Denims, and also the Chair of BGMEA Standing Committee on Foreign Mission Cell, the panelists discussed circularity scenarios and possible solutions to successfully transform Bangladesh’s garment and textile industry to integrate circularity into the value chain.

The dialogue brought together a wide range of stakeholders from the fashion industry, including brands, manufacturers, policymakers, financial institutions, and recycling innovators. The goal of the dialogue was to discuss the challenges and opportunities of transitioning to a circular economy in the Bangladesh textile and garment industry.

One of the key topics of discussion was the role of innovative business models in driving the transition to a circular economy. The participants discussed how innovative business models can encourage apparel manufacturers and brands to design products with circularity in mind, promote extended product lifecycles, and minimize waste generation.

Another key topic of discussion was the need for a supportive regulatory framework. The speakers discussed how policymakers can facilitate the creation of a favorable regulatory environment that promotes sustainability, encourages local innovation, and attracts international expertise to the country’s circular apparel industry.

The dialogue also highlighted the importance of collaboration between different stakeholders. Participants discussed how government, financial institutions, manufacturers, and industry associations like BGMEA can work together to accelerate the adoption of circular practices.

The panel concluded with a call for concerted efforts from all stakeholders for transition to a circular economy in the Bangladesh’s textile and garment industry.