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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Chinese/Khmer factory divide

Chinese/Khmer factory divide

My parents and I read the report by Norris Lo (The Chinese/Khmer divide in factories

- Post, June 16) and we took offense at the attitudes expressed by expatriate Chinese

employees of the factory companies.

My parents are of Chinese descent, who settled in Cambodia and lived through the

Pol Pot regime among their Khmer friends and relatives. They find it a disgrace that

expatriate Chinese insult Cambodian workers.

Yes, these Cambodian factory workers are uneducated and inexperienced. However the

Chinese supervisors should focus on the positive outcome. Even though the Cambodian

factory workers are uneducated and inexperienced, each has taken on the challenge

of being educated and is able to work in these factories producing (I am assuming)

a very profitable business. (Why would these Chinese bring their business to Cambodia

if it were not profitable?)

Why are the Chinese employers not willing to train the Cambodian workers into supervisors'

positions?

The Chinese cannot claim that Cambodian workers are lazy or uneducated, because these

Cambodian workers are survivors of the Pol Pot regime, during which Cambodia lost

everything. Within a short time the people have been able to reconstruct themselves

to work and have educated themselves into a very modernized work force.

I compliment the Cambodian factory workers for a great job well done.

I feel the Chinese workers are not willing to teach the Cambodian workers to become

supervisors and leaders because the Chinese workers themselves are scared that once

the Cambodians are educated like the Chinese, the Chinese will not have a job in

Cambodia.

Every one of the Chinese workers quoted in the Post said he or she came to work in

Cambodia for higher pay. So the only lazy and scared individuals are the Chinese

themselves.

The Chinese started their revolution in the 1970s to educate and provide experienced

workers in the labor force. India just started their revolution to educate and provide

skilled labor in 1990.

Cambodia, on the other hand, is just recovering from being a torn-down country. I

think Cambodia will one day be just as successful as China, Japan, India and surrounding

countries.

It will be a long and hard struggle, but I know my parents are hard working, so I

believe the rest of Cambodians are just as hard working.

Sochinda Keopenchan

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