Apparel exporters have decided to appeal to the government to allow export-oriented garment factories to run from 31 July amid the strict lockdown that will be in effect then.
They say this will help them export the scheduled shipments on time. Otherwise, they will face losses.
The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) may make a formal request to the government by Thursday, said its Vice-President Shahidullah Azim.
A BGMEA team, led by its president, former presidents and high officials, will meet Cabinet Secretary at 3pm Thursday at the Secretariat regarding the current issues and situation of the garment sector, said BGMEA Director Mohiuddin Rubel.
The BGMEA made the decision on Wednesday at an emergency board meeting.
Most of the board members joined the meeting virtually and BGMEA President Faruque Hassan presided over it.
On Tuesday, the Cabinet Division said the ongoing restrictions would be relaxed from early Thursday till 6am on 23 July to facilitate trade and economic activities centring around Eid-ul-Adha.
A strict lockdown will resume at 6:01am on 23 July and will continue till early 6 August. The government said factories would remain closed during this period.
This means together with Eid holidays, factories will stay closed for at least 18 days in a row.
Clothing exporters said this would be too difficult for them to maintain shipment schedules.
Considering the pandemic situation, the BGMEA board also agreed that a strict lockdown was necessary.
"If people are not alive, the economy will not survive," said Shahidullah.
Mostafiz Uddin, managing director of Denim Expert, said his company would miss a million dollar shipment due to the post-Eid shutdown.
After learning about the upcoming shutdown, a number of his buyers contacted him and asked him to deliver shipments on time.
"Now, we have as many work orders as we can produce and if factories remain closed, this will lead to a very tough situation as we will have problems maintaining shipment schedules," he added.