KIK signs compensation agreement for victims of Ali Enterprises fire tragedy

AMSTERDAM - German discount giant KIK this week signed an agreement with the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) to make an initial payment to the victims and their families of US$ 1 million for immediate relief, and to negotiate a long term compensation package with all other involved stakeholders.

The agreement was presented a press conference in Karachi on 5 January in which various local trade unions, including the National Trade Union Federation, participated. Said Karamat Ali, Executive Director of PILER: “KIK is the major buyer of Ali Enterprises. Pakistani trade union activists and international labour solidarity organisations including Clean Clothes Campaign persuaded the company to pay compensation to the affected families.”

The initial payment will be used to compensate the families of those victims who have not received any government compensation as the bodies have not been identified due to the severity of the burns and the decomposition of the bodies. “KIK also expressed a willingness to compensate workers who faced severe injuries in the fire leading to disability and loss of future employment. The remaining workers will be assisted in the next step after a compensation amount is agreed upon through a consensus between all stakeholders including employers and other international companies,” added Karamat Ali.

Ineke Zeldenrust, International Coordinator at CCC: 'We welcome this agreement and look forward to having the full compensations and relief package, which we estimate will be at least EUR 20 million, to be negotiated soon. We continue our campaign towards other international stakeholders, notably auditing organisations SAI and Rina, to also take their responsibility and pay their share of the compensation needed.”

In order to facilitate the compensation process, PILER requests the Sindh High Court to constitute an independent commission to oversee the compensation process and determine all necessary details for the purpose. KIK also agreed to work for better labour rights in Pakistan.