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Cambodia’s laid-off workers still have farming in their blood

Staff / Khmer Times Share:
Mr Hun Sen drives a rice harvester during his visit to farmers in Takeo province’s Prey Kabas district yesterday. KT/Khem Sovannara

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday said the factory or hotel workers in Cambodia who have lost jobs due to the virus pandemic can still take up farming because they still have parents or family members working in the agriculture sector.


He said in industrialised countries, if workers lost jobs they would find it difficult to make ends meet because their grandparents and parents had migrated from rural areas to find jobs in the industrial, commercial or service sectors.

Mr Hun Sen was speaking while visiting farmers in Takeo province’s Prey Kabas district. He said that during the 2008 and 2009 global economic crisis, nearly 40,000 factory workers in Cambodia had lost their jobs and returned to work with their farming parents in provinces.

“Now it is the same. About 100,000 migrant workers who returned from Thailand have gone back to join the labour force in the agriculture sector,” Mr Hun Sen said. “Our factory workers who lost jobs have also returned to their home provinces, with monetary support of $40 monthly from the government, and joined their parents to do farming.”

“They supply the agriculture sector with more workers. Workers who lost jobs from the service and industrial sector and migrants have returned to their home provinces. We have jobs for them to do in the field of agriculture,” he added.

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