The US embassy has appreciated the efforts by Cambodia’s Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training in handling complicated labor issues which have arisen in the wake of recent economic disruptions. In particular, the ministry has overseen worker protections and improvements in working conditions.
Labor minister Ith Sam Heng hosted US Ambassador Patrick Murphy on February 23 to discuss cooperating on the implementation of trade integration policies and international labour standards.
In a Facebook post following the meeting, Sam Heng said Murphy had praised the ministry’s efforts to enact measures for the protection of factory workers affected by lay-offs.
Murphy lauded the provision of benefits and cash support payments made to suspended factory workers, settlements reached in cases of firms owing employee seniority payments and interventions on behalf of uncompensated workers in instances of factory closures or management absconding.
Sam Heng thanked the US for recognizing the Kingdom’s progress in ensuring labourers rights of freedom of association and achieving working conditions in line with international standards, which have been key stipulations by the US for continued provision of trade preferences.
He noted that the ministries of Labor and Commerce have been pushing for the expansion of the Better Factories Cambodia project to include travel goods and bags, following favorable evaluations of working conditions in the garment and footwear sector.