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Affordable housing for garment workers requested

Mom Kunthear / Khmer Times Share:
Labour Minister Ith Samheng delivers a speech. KT/Tep Sony

A unionist yesterday requested that the government work with the International Labour Organisation to draft a new affordable housing policy for garment workers.

Sam Aun, president of the National Union Alliance Chamber of Cambodia, said during an International Labour Day event that affordable housing for garment workers is still needed.

“Most workers who work in Phnom Penh live in rented houses,” Mr Aun said. “They work 20 years and they rent for 20 years until they stop working. Workers do not own their own homes.”

“I think that if the government creates a policy to make housing more affordable, workers can own their own homes in five to ten years,” he added.

Mr Aun said if the government is able to succeed in providing affordable housing, then the lives of garment workers will improve.

Labour Minister Ith Samheng yesterday said he supports the idea and that the ministry will work with its partners in the private sector to lower the price of accommodations.

“I have discussed this with some partners, especially those in the private sector, to invest in residences and accommodations to sell to our workers at a cheaper price,” Mr Samheng said.

“If I have a lot of money, I will do it for our workers. We will discuss and consider this point when the National Social Security Fund has more money to help with this project,” he added. “When workers own their own homes, their living standards will improve.”

Additionally, Mr Samheng said a draft pension law for private sector employees will be approved by the National Assembly during the third quarter of this year.

He added that it will allow private sector employees to receive their pension at the age of 60.

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