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The Young Women From Rural Villages Powering and Urban Industry: A Baseline Survey of Rangon’s Garment Sector Workforce

December 12th, 2017  •  Author:   Enlightened Myanmar Research Foundation  •  2 minute read


In May 2017, C&A Foundation commissioned Enlightened Myanmar Research Foundation and Andaman Research & Advisory to undertake a study of the garment sector workforce. C&A Foundation and its partners recognized there was a lack of a strong quantitative evidence on the demographics and economic standing of garment sector workers. This executive summary provides highlights and key findings from the full report, which seeks to provide a first step towards understanding who Myanmar garment workers are, their lives, and how organizations can work to empower them.


The prototypical Yangon garment sector worker is a young woman between the ages of 19 and 21, who has migrated to Yagon within the last two years. She is ethnically Bamar, speaks Burmese  as her first language, and can read and write at a basic level having completed grade five. She is from Ayeyarwaddy  Region, though many of her friends are from Bago and Rakhine. She is unmarried and lives with several friends/colleagues and one other family member, her older cousin.

This worker is employed by a foreign-  owned factory as a sewer. She joined  the factory because it offered a decent  regular salary for work that was neither  physically demanding nor an unpleasant  place to spend her days. Her workweek  is six days, with her only day off on Sundays.
She has been working in this factory for almost one year and if she were to quit, it would be to find a factory with better base pay. She has an ID card but no letter confirming her position and no copy of her contract.

Download full report HERE.