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Walmart link to Bangladesh blaze 'complicated': CEO

Published on Dec 13, 2012 6:15 AM
This handout photograph released by The Bangladesh Garment and Industrial Workers Federation (BGIWF) and The Bangladesh Center for Workers Solidarity (BCWS) on November 27, 2012, shows a general view of machines within a burnt out garment manufacturing building in Dhaka, in the aftermath of a fire which killed some 110 garment workers. -- PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - Global retailer Walmart said it had cut off a supplier that had sourced clothes for it from the Bangladesh garment factory where 110 workers were killed by a fire.

Walmart chief executive Mike Duke said in New York late Tuesday that the company was tied to the disaster at the Tazreen Fashion factory on Nov 24 via a complex supply chain.

"This is complicated, there are multiple steps in a supply chain, there could be a supplier that may be based here in the United States and may be buying from factories, and sometimes there are subcontract factories," Mr Duke said at the Council for Foreign Relations late Tuesday.

"We have a requirement to know those factories, though, and in this case that violation occurred and we're not going to do business with that particular supplier anymore." The New York times and other media identified two US apparel makers had been using the unsafe Tazreen factory to make clothing they supplied to Walmart, even though Walmart said they had blacklisted the plant.

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