(Phnom Penh): The Working Group on Workers’ Wages, Apparel, and Footwear met for discussion this morning for the fourth meeting of the Ministry of Labor.
Mr. Som Oun, a member of the trilateral working group of the minimum wage negotiations that attended the meeting, said that the result of today’s meeting was that the employer (factory owner) had reached a figure of $ 177 to trade unions $ 183. Attendees took a ballot to select the set wage.
He said that the overwhelming result supported US $ 177, which will be filed at the final meeting at the Labor Advisory Committee on 5 October 2018 at 2:00 pm. Afterwards, the minimum wage for workers for 2019 will be officially announced.
Mr. Som Oun cited a comparison of the regional wage benchmark in 2018, especially in the garment sector, such as:
Cambodian workers receive US $ 170,
Bangladesh US $ 67
Sri Lanka $ 67
India up from $ 77 to $ 143,
Myanmar up to $ 108
Indonesia Up to $ 267
Vietnam, up from US $ 122 to US $ 175
Laos US $ 130
Pakistan. $ 134
Mr. Som Oun added that Cambodia’s minimum wage hike mechanism, with its clear formula and sound principles, was favorable to smooth discussions.
He also cited research data from Vietnam, which divides workers’ minimum wages into four regions. He said that in 2018, Vietnam’s minimum wage in the first zone was $ 171, and by 2019, Vietnam will also have a 5.3% minimum wage increase. Thus, the minimum wage in Vietnam for 2019 will be $ 181.
Mr. Som Oun pointed out that union representatives always want higher salary, but this also had to be linked to competitiveness with local countries to maintain investment and job security. He hoped that the current wage increase would be welcomed by all stakeholders.