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Talks on minimum wage for next year to start in August

Sen David / Khmer Times Share:
Unions, employers and government representatives at the minimum wage negotiations last year. KT/Pann Rachana

The Labour Ministry announced yesterday that deliberations for next year’s mimimum wage for workers in the textile, garment and footwear sector should start in August.

The sector is hit hard by coronavirus-related lay-offs and workers’ representatives believe the negotiations will be tougher than in previous years.

In a statement, the ministry said the National Council on Minimum Wage will hold meetings between representatives of unions, employers and the government to iron out proposals put on the table for negotiations.

It said all parties must provide researched data on social implications, such as family status, inflation rate and cost of living, as well as economic implications including productivity, competitiveness of the country, labout market status and profitability of the sector, of the wage increase as stipulated in Article 5 of the Law on Minimum Wage.

The ministry added that during the meetings, all parties must adhere to measures put in place by the Health Ministry to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Ken Loo, GMAC secretary-general, said yesterday even though the garment sector is affected by the coronavirus situation, minimum wage negotiations must still go on.

Pav Sina, president of the Collective Union of Movement of Workers, said yesterday he welcomes and is ready to take part in the dialogue process even though Cambodia is suffering from the effects of the virus pandemic during which thousands of workers lost jobs or are on furlough.

“Every year, even without a pandemic situation, employers have always complained about the difficulty in increasing the minimum wage,” he said. “This year, the garment sector is affected badly by the virus situation and negotiation will be tighter than last year.”

The minimum wage for garment workers in 2020 is $190 per month.

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