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Unions reject bonus bargain

Union leaders yesterday rejected a proposal from Cambodian garment makers to provide US$9 a month for a worker’s housing and transport fees, demanding an additional $1.

The benefits were announced last week after unions said they would lead a large-scale protest in August in a bid for higher salaries.

Unions will meet footwear and garment manufacturers on July 11 to once again discuss the requested benefits, Ath Thun, president of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers Democratic Union, said after yesterday’s meeting.

Nang Sothy, co-chair of the Government-Private Working Group on Industrial Relations, said the negotiations were made on the behalf of Prime Minister Hun Sen.

About 700 garment and footwear factories, employing some 650,000 workers, operate in Cambodia, Nang Sothy said. The monthly minimum salary for a worker is $66 with another $7 attendance bonus.

Ken Loo, secretary-general of the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia, told the Post previously that the strikes would slow the Kingdom’s garment manufacturing industry.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Kunmakara at kunmakara.may@phnompenhpost.com

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