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PM Allows Labor Ministry to Borrow Money from State to Settle Dispute

PHNOM PENH: Prime Minister Hun Sen has ordered the Ministry of Labor to take money from the state to help settle ongoing labor disputes, before taking action against the companies involved.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony for students of the University of Puthisastra in Phnom Penh on Wednesday morning, 17 August, Prime Minister Hun Sen acknowledged that the workers of one factory had submitted a petition to the Prime Minister's Cabinet after not being able to find a solution with the Ministry of Labor.

In response to this case, the Prime Minister decided to order the Minister of Labor, Ith Samheng, to utilize money from the state to settle the dispute first, and then settle the issue with the involved company later.

"Borrow money from the government, [settle the labor dispute first] and then deal with that company later," he said.

He further added, "Let us deal with the factory owners later by filing a lawsuit or freezing their bank account."

On 15 August, some workers from Canteran Apparel Cambodia visited the Prime Minister’s cabinet to ask for the Prime Minister's intervention in finding a solution for the dispute they had with the factory owner, who was not paying the workers their deserved benefits. This case has also been submitted to the legal court process.

There are about 200 workers at the Malaysian-owned Canteran Apparel Cambodia factory, some of whom have worked at the factory for nearly 20 years.


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