// UK retailers partner with government to launch £6.85m fund to support supply chains
// The Department for International Development (DFID) launched the ‘vulnerable supply chains’ facility
Primark and Tesco have become some of the retail businesses to team up with the UK government to launch a fund to protect supply chains and support international workers.
The Department for International Development (DFID) has launched the ‘vulnerable supply chains’ facility in partnership with some of the UK’s largest retailers such as Primark, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Marks & Spencer.
The £6.85 million fund, which includes “investment from UK businesses to keep vulnerable workers in their supply chains in safe and secure employment” also ensures a “steady supply” of products like vegetables, coffee and clothes”.
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The fund is comprised of £4.85 million in funding from DFID and a further £2 million from partnerships.
It will focus primarily on supply chains and workers in countries including Myanmar, Bangladesh, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ghana.
Meanwhile, retailers will work with charities and non-governmental organisations to “improve working conditions and support greater access to healthcare in some of the world’s poorest countries”.
M&S has pledged to work with international aid charity Care to “improve health services for 80,000 factory workers in Bangladesh”.
The government said the scheme aims to help alleviate the ongoing disruption to international supply chains caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We want to ensure people in Britain can continue to buy affordable, high-quality goods from around the world,” International development secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said.
“This new fund will strengthen vital supply chains for UK consumers while supporting some of the most vulnerable workers in developing countries. It will make a real difference to people in the UK and abroad.”