Cambodia raises minimum wage for textiles and footwear workers
Cambodia has raised its minimum monthly wage for workers in the textile and footwear industry by US$2 to US$194, effective January next year. The amount, however, is less than the US$12 sought for by major worker unions.
“I request all relevant stakeholders, the employers and the government, to consider the possibilities of adding more to the workers’ wage,” said Pav Sina, president of the Collective Union Movement of Workers, reports Reuters.
“Our labour law says that a minimum wage must allow workers to have a decent life,” said Yang Sophorn, president of the Cambodian Alliance of Trade Unions, according to Radio Free Asia.
However, the wage hike has been met with some opposition. The raise could be problematic with operating costs also expected to rise, said Kaing Monika, Deputy Secretary-General at the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia (GMAC), adding that “even a US$2 increase would have a negative impact”.
Before the pandemic hit, Cambodia’s garment industry was worth US$7 billion a year. The sector is the country’s largest employer, providing income for rural workers.