On 24 April, it is going to be five years since the Rana Plaza’s tragic collapse of a garment factory, where 1,100 lives were lost and many more injured. Significant progress has been made, but more remains to be done on safety risks, while inspection and compliance need to be enhanced to better safeguard the working conditions of more than 60 millions workers in the industry, of which 75% are women.
At the same time, this is one of the most polluting industries, responsible for more than 1,7 mln tons of CO2 emissions per year, and 90 mln tons of waste per year, of which 20% only are recycled. Not to mention the health impacts, as about 8% of dermatological diseases are reported to be caused by the chemicals in the clothing and footwear we wear. With current trajectories of production and consumption, these pressures will intensify by 2030.
Global and complex value chains, with production facilities scattered all over the world, make it very hard to gain accurate information about how and where such impacts occur. In order to increase the industry’s ability to manage its value chain more sustainably, both consumers and businesses must first be aware of the nature and magnitude of these risks. Improving transparency and traceability of value chains has therefore become a priority.
The aim of the conference is to brainstorm on how deep in the supply chain visibility is necessary for responsible sourcing, along with current trends, solutions, and remaining challenges for supply chain traceability. The conference will also discuss the progress of the ongoing UNECE UN/CEFACT project on a framework initiative, which aims at developing principles and policy recommendations, standards and implementation guidelines for traceability of sustainable textile value chains, in support of SDG 12.
Experts on trade facilitation, international supply chain management, traceability and sustainability in the clothing and footwear sector from governments, the private sector, academia and international organizations..
The conference is being organized by: the UNECE Trade Facilitation Section secretariat, in coordination with the UN/CEFACT Agriculture Domain.
How can transparency and traceability help make textile and leather value chains more responsible and sustainable (SDG12)? What should companies do to identify, prevent and account for adverse impacts? What is the role of policies and regulations? Which stakeholders need to be engaged and at what stages to overcome sustainability risks for the sector?
Maria Teresa Pisani, Economic Cooperation and Trade Division, UNECE
Frans Van Diepen, State Enterprise Agency, The Netherlands
Moderated roundtable discussion
Dorothy Lovell, Policy Analyst, Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs, OECD
Joseph Wozniak, Head, Trade for Sustainable Development, ITC
Conor Boyle, Better Work's Global Operations Manager, ILO
Anita Househam, Senior Manager, Supply Chain Sustainability & Decent Work, UN Global Compact
Mauro Scalia, Manager of Sustainable Businesses, EURATEX
Andrea Redaelli, Project & Portfolio Manager, Hugo Boss (by video)
Teresa Moreira, Head Competition and Consumer Policies, UNCTAD
Judith Fessehaie, Trade and Development Manager, ICTSD
14:30 – 17:30
What are the solutions and good practices available for addressing sustainability risks in the sector? How can they be scaled up? How can innovation help, including blockchain technology? What is the role of international standards?
Moderated roundtable discussion
Lee Tyler, Senior Manager of Standards Assurance, Textile Exchange
Sabrina Frontini, Director, Quality Certification Institute for the Leather Sector (ICEC)
Markus Pikart, Secretariat CITES, UN Environment
Paolo Naldini, Director, Cittadellarte Fashion B.E.S.T
Vittoria Marchi, Responsible of Marketing, Marchi&Fildi
Andrea Djurle, Network Coordinator, Swedish Textile Water Initiative, SIWI
Matteo Ward, Founder, WRÅD