Value fashion giant Primark is to offer short-term financial aid to all of those affected by the collapse of the Rana Plaza building, which housed one of its suppliers.

The retailer is taking unilateral action to try to alleviate the immediate suffering of the victims of the collapse, which has left more than 1,100 people dead, as the long term compensation plan that has been promised by some brands is taking time to put together.

It is providing financial aid to all workers or their families and dependents who worked in the building, including those who supplied its rivals, for six weeks ahead of the long term support plans. Primark will start making these payments within seven days.

Meanwhile Primark said it was working “as fast as possible” on a long term compensation package for the employees working in its supplier factory. The retailer said a reliable list of the employees who worked in the Rana Plaza building was not yet available.

Primark has vowed to continue with its food aid programme which is going out to about 1,000 families a week in Dhaka.

A Primark spokesman said: “The company was the first brand to acknowledge that its suppliers were housed in the Rana Plaza complex. The company was the first brand to commit to paying compensation to workers and their dependents. And the company was the first UK brand to sign up to the Accord on building and fire safety.

“The company is now extending help to workers who made clothing for its competitors. And the company is working as fast as possible to devise a scheme to provide long-term, secure assistance to workers in its supplier factory.”

Ethical Trading Initiative director Peter McAllister said: “Primark is doing the right thing by offering immediate support for the victims and families of the Rana Plaza disaster.

“We’re pleased that Primark has also confirmed its commitment to providing long-term compensation and support, which it is developing with credible labour representatives. This is a welcome move, and we encourage the other brands that sourced from Rana Plaza to follow suit.”