Safety improvements at Bangladesh garment factories are part of a complex process which will take years to complete, the Dhaka Apparel Summit was told.

Ian Spaulding, senior partner at Elevate, also urged a change in mindset on the part of factory owners when it comes to safety, with a greater focus on training alongside inspection and remediation.

Meanwhile, Brig Gen Ali Ahmed Khan, director general of Bangladesh’s Fire Service and Civil Defence, said more fire stations were needed to deal with safety risks at factories.

In industrial zones like Gazipur, Savar and Narayanganj, five or six additional fire stations were needed to enable firefighters to reach factories within ten minutes, he added.

Narrow roads were an additional hazard, he said, and factory owners needed to leave space for fire engines when planning and building their plants.

The summit, the first of its kind in Bangladesh, was held this week, organised by the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), in association with Brand Forum Bangladesh.