Cambodia begins talks over 2023 wage hike for garment, footwear, travel goods sector

Cambodia’s national council on minimum wage on Monday began to discuss the annual increase of monthly minimum wage for the garment, footwear and travel goods industry for 2023, according to a statement from the council.

The first of a series of meetings was participated by Labor and Vocational Training Minister Ith Samheng, representative of the government, Nang Sothy, deputy representative of the employers, and Kim Chansamnang, deputy representative of the employees, the statement said.

During the meeting, the council presented key statistical updates on socio-economic criteria to form the basis for the 2023 minimum wage talks, it said, adding that the council also received input such as current inflation, competition and market situation from the representatives of employers and employees.

According to the statement, the representatives of employers and employees have not proposed their respective specific figures for the negotiations yet as they need further internal discussions.

“The next meetings will be held on Aug. 24 and 31 and Sept. 7, 14, 22 and 23 at the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training,” the statement said.

The garment, footwear and travel goods sector, the kingdom’s largest foreign currency earner, consists of about 1,100 factories and branches with around 750,000 workers, according to the ministry.

The Southeast Asian nation exported relevant products worth $6.6 billion during the first half of this year, up 40 percent from the same period last year, according to the General Department of Customs and Excise.

The monthly minimum wage for the sector is $194  in 2022, an increase from $192 in 2021; however, workers have got fringe benefits such as a transport and housing allowance of $7 and a regular attendance bonus of $10 per month. Xinhua