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Campaign to legalise workers delayed

Sen David / Khmer Times Share:
Thailand faced an exodus of migrant workers. KT/ Ven Rathavong

The Ministry of Labour yesterday confirmed there had been a slight delay to the planned 100-day campaign to provide illegal migrant workers in Thailand with proper documents to remain working in the country legally.

Labour Minister Ith Samheng said the start date of the 100-day campaign, which was to launch on Tuesday and include diplomats visiting workers in Thailand, hasdbeen pushed to the middle of August to allow Thai employers and government officials to finish compiling a list of workers.

“Currently, employers in Thailand are compiling lists of their foreign workers,” he said, noting the lists were supposed to be completed by now.

“The Cambodian government has delayed the 100-day campaign to the middle of August to allow more time for the Thais to finish their work.” Mr Samheng added there are 20 groups of Cambodian officials ready to visit migrant workers at more than 200 factories in Thailand to issue them with passports and other legal documents.

KT/ Ven Rathavong

The campaign was organised due to an exodus of illegal migrant workers from Thailand after the government there began a crackdown on illegal foreign workers.

According to a Ministry of Labour report, there are more than one million Cambodian workers in Thailand, including 700,000 legal workers and more than 300,000 illegal labourers.

Sin Nam Yung, deputy director of migrant worker coordination in Poipet town, said that not as many workers are returning from Thailand now, compared to last month during the exodus.

“The illegal workers are not coming back in large numbers like before because they have been allowed to stay in Thailand while the two countries work together to issue them proper documents,” he said.

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