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Minimum Wage Remains Stagnant during 15th Negotiation Meeting

PHNOM PENH: The Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training said that employers and workers unions have still not reached an agreement on an increase in minimum wage, with unions holding to $215 per month and employers only willing to raise the wage by one dollar to $201 per month.

The National Minimum Wage Council resumed the ongoing meetings on September 11 to discuss the minimum wage for factory workers in textiles, garments, footwear, travel products and bags for 2024. So far there have been 15 minimum wage negotiation meetings, nine which have been mediated by the government; none of which have made any meaningful progress on increasing the quality of life for Cambodian factory workers.

On September 11, there were five separate talks held, with three internal meetings of each party and two negotiation meetings that included representatives for employers, employees and the government. According to the report, both sides explained their positions in a professional and mature manner while representatives of the Royal Government continued to coordinate and provide additional explanations regarding the social and economic criteria to all present.

None of these talks made any headway as both sides remained steadfast in their demands with workers’ representatives maintaining their requests of $215 per month while employers' representatives continued to offer up an extra $12 dollars per year at $201 per month.

As talks continue, the minimum wage for Cambodian factory workers remains at $200 per month, while inflation and the cost of living continue to climb. Representatives agreed to resume discussions at 9 am on September 18 in hopes of completing negotiations by September 28, 2023.

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