AP News

Companies move ahead with Bangladesh safety accord

NEW YORK (AP) — A group of primarily European retailers and clothing makers has set a deadline of next spring to inspect clothing factories in Bangladesh that make garments for the companies.

The group of 70 companies includes Swedish retailer H&M, Italian clothing maker Benetton and French retailer Carrefour. They say they will concentrate on renovating the most hazardous factories.

The details of the legally binding five-year pact come after negotiating with worker rights' groups and other organizations on how the plan should be carried out. The plan, announced in mid-May, initially had 30 companies signing on.

Stores and clothing makers are facing pressure to increase their oversight of factory conditions in Bangladesh following a building collapse in April that killed 1,129 workers there.

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