Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Emergency measures required to alleviate effects of crisis: UN

Emergency measures required to alleviate effects of crisis: UN

Emergency measures required to alleviate effects of crisis: UN

IN response to economic forecasts that have been "continually revised downwards", the UN Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking (UNIAP) released a report last week announcing a series of initiatives intended to provide immediate support for laid-off factory workers and other Cambodians struggling during the global economic crisis.

The report, released Friday, was a follow-up to a conference that took place on July 15 and 16, during which UNIAP and a variety of other organisations met to analyse the effects of the crisis in Cambodia and formulate a coordinated response.

UNIAP National Project Coordinator Lim Tith said UNIAP had decided to put initiatives into action as quickly as possible.

Without special effort to expedite the process, he said, "Plans may only be approved after the crisis is finished."

UNIAP and its partners concluded that though the effects of the economic crisis will be felt across the economy, workers in sectors driven by exports and foreign investment are especially at risk. These sectors include tourism, construction and the garment industry.

Several initiatives discussed at the conference have already been put in place. This month, UNIAP and its partners, including the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia (GMAC), launched a magazine titled Precious Girl, which was distributed to factory workers and includes information on job training, financial literacy and avenues for reporting exploitation and abuse.

Lim Tith said plans were being developed to make microfinance lending and vocational training more widely available for laid-off workers, though no dates have been set for those programmes.

Times are rough
The UNIAP report estimates that anywhere between 20,000 and 60,000 garment industry workers have recently been laid off due to the economic crisis and low-cost competition from countries including Bangladesh and Vietnam.

Ny You, a communications officer at the International Labour Organisation, praised UNIAP's efforts to help those workers, but said they required more comprehensive protections.

"[Workers] need social protection - benefits and care," he said as he called for stricter enforcement of labour laws and the establishment of job centres and retraining programmes.


  • Kak Channthy, Cambodian Space Project frontwoman, killed in crash at 38 [Updated]

    Updated 5:05pm, Tuesday, March 20, 2018 Kak Channthy, frontwoman of popular The Cambodian Space Project, was killed Tuesday morning in a traffic accident in Phnom Penh. She was 38. Channthy, the internationally recognised singer-songwriter also known as “Srey Thy”, was reportedly travelling in a tuk-tuk on the city's

  • Australians protest Asean summit visit by PM Hun Sen

    Hundreds of protesters gathered in Sydney’s Hyde Park on Friday to protest against Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who claimed to have been gifted millions of dollars by the Australian government ahead of a special Asean summit this weekend. An estimated 300 protesters, the majority of

  • One Australian, one Cambodian killed in explosion at military base

    Updated: 5:20pm, Friday 16 March 2018 An Australian tourist and a Cambodian soldier were killed in an explosion on Thursday afternoon at an army base in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. The Australian, whom the government initially identified as a technical demining expert in his 40s, and

  • Peeling back layers of prehistory in Battambang

    When the man passed away, he had not yet reached 50. He belonged to a tribe that had settled near the Sangker River in Battambang province, likely cultivating the fields and raising animals. On the side, they hunted for boars, and even turtles, one of which