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Coronavirus takes its toll on garment industry with  130 factories suspending operations, affecting 100,000 workers

Chhut Bunthoeun / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Nearly 10 0,000 workers are facing their jobs suspension. KT/Siv Channa

Cambodia’s garment and footwear industries are being severely impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic with exports affected in the upcoming months.

Up to  130 factories have thus far submitted notices requesting for suspension and these will impact up 100,000 workers, government official said yesterday.

Labour Ministry spokesman Heng Sour said in a press conference that garment exports had felt the pinch much from January to February because its, major markets, particular European Union and U.S remained open for the product exports.

For the second quarter of this year, garment and footwear exports will see a 50 to 60 percent decline over the same corresponding period last year, Sour noted.

“Cambodia has yet to receive any orders from buyers for May and June, as well as for the foreseeable future. We can conclude that export in garment and footwear will be hit hard in the second quarter this year,” he said.

The EU and U.S, the main market destination for the Kingdom’s garment exports, have adversely affected by the global CoVid-19 pandemic. Thus, Sour said, their markets continue to close and people were no longer spending  money.

“That said, the pandemic has led to the demand for garment and footwear and other products to be dramatically reduced.”

The government and factory owners have agreed to provide a minimum wage of $70 per month for each suspended worker. Of which, the government contributes $40 and the remaining $30 is to be borne e by factory owners.

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