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May 6, 2021

Duchess of Cambridge’s dress, made in Romanian ‘sweatshop’

The dress worn by Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, at a meeting with US First Lady Michelle Obama, made a very big impression, but it reportedly was manufactured in a poor suburb of Bucharest by underpaid workers, according to ‘Daily Mail.’

The camel-coloured ‘Shola’ design, by Reiss, was produced for less than GBP 15 by seamstresses earning significantly less than the average salary for textile workers in Romania, the publication said, underlining that the dress cost GBP 175. “But that glamour is a far cry from the bleak working conditions of those who made it in Bucharest.

The 170 employees of clothing firm Rimcor Ex work in a factory which resembles an industrial compound, with bars on the windows, 8ft walls and solid metal fences around the periphery,” the publication said. According to daily ‘Adevarul,’ the factory is located in Ferentari neighbourhood. One dressmaker interviewed by the ‘Daily Mail’ said the typical GBP 168-a-month salary for workers at the factory was above the country’s minimum wage. Ano­ther worker, 44-year-old Ju­lia­na Haita, described conditions as ‘good’ and told the publication, “This is normal for me. I’m used to it.” “There is no suggestion that working conditions at Rimcor Ex are below-par for the former communist nation. But while the sweatshops of Bangladesh and India were now carefully avoided by ethical firms, textile manufacturing has shifted to Eastern Europe, experts said. Many of the women who filed out of the factory gates this week barely knew who Prince William’s wife was, let alone that they were behind her outfit,” ‘Daily Mail’ added.

On being shown a picture of Kate alongside Mrs Obama at Buckingham Palace, Haita told the newspaper, “It’s really nice that a small thing that I do here gets into a ballroom somewhere in the world.”

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