JAPAN TO MAKE RMG FACTORIES EARTHQUAKE RESISTANT
Sun Online Desk
Japan government has taken an initiative to make vulnerable building of the countryÂs 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,Â Senior Representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Hiroyuki Tomita said in a seminar at a city hotel here on Saturday, reports BSS.
The Project Capacity Development of Natural Disaster Resistant techniques of Construction and Retrofitting for Public Buildings (CNCRP), implemented by Public Works Department (PWD) with technical support of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) organised the seminar titled ÂDevelopment of Safer Building Overcoming the Tragedy of Rana Plaza IncidentÂ.
Under CNCRP, a team of Japanese experts has been transferring retrofitting technology to the engineers of PWD and other public and private organisations since 2011. Retrofitting is a technology that could be used to make a vulnerable building earthquake resistant without demolishing it.
The JICA High official said the Japanese experts have already started their work to do retrofit to two RMG factories initially and the JICA will implement a large project soon to cover more vulnerable RMG buildings of the country.
In a presentation JICAÂs Assistant Programme Officer Kaniz Fatema said after tragic incident of Rana plaza, JICA took a programme titled ÂRMG Sector Safe Environment ProjectÂ and created a Taka 100 crore fund with the Bangladesh Bank for financing the RMG owners to make their building safe for the workers.
Under the programme, JICA requested the RMG owners to assess their factories building as well as to take the opportunity of the provided JICA fund to make the building strengthen. As per the JICAÂs call a total of 300 RMG factories applied for being assessed and of these factories, 214 were selected for the assessment by the CNCRP.
Of the 214 RMG factories, we found 74 per cent have no legal construction permit or structural drawing, Kaniz said adding, even 65 per cent of the buildings, those have legal permit documents and structural drawing, do not comply standard set by Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC).
The CNCRP project selected two factories and taken initiative to conduct retrofitting by providing the owners soft loan of 850,000 and 600,000 US dollar respectively.
ÂIf we only consider to do retrofit to only those 26 per cent of the countryÂs total RMG factories that have legal construction permit and structural design, it will need 1.17 billion US dollar,Â she said.
In another presentation, JICA expert team leader Fumio Kaneko said there is a concept that retrofitting is very expensive and it is not viable for economy like Bangladesh.
APRIL 27, 2015