Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodia and Qatar to form labour watchdog

Cambodia and Qatar to form labour watchdog

Cambodia and Qatar to form labour watchdog

Cambodia's next step in allowing workers such as maids and builders to travel to Qatar will be to create a committee with the Arab state to ensure their safety is protected, a senior labour official said yesterday.

The Senate on Wednesday supported an agreement between the two countries that should clear the way for Cambodians to travel to Qatar to work in a variety of industries.

Oum Mean, secretary of state at the Ministry of Labour, said the two countries would form a committee to examine the conditions Cambodian migrant workers will face in Qatar.

“[This] committee, which has officials from Cambodia and Qatar, will discuss safety, risks to employees, the types of jobs Cambodians can fill, how many workers should be sent and which firms will be eligible to send workers,” he said.

The welfare of Cambodian migrants has been in the spotlight since the government put a ban on allowing women to travel to Malaysia as maids following a series of abuse cases.

A long-awaited memorandum of understanding between Cambodia and Malaysia is yet to materialise.

Moeun Tola, head of the Community Legal Education Center’s labour program, said the government could learn a lot from the treatment of Cambodian maids in Malaysia when implementing the agreement.

“The government has to be careful,” he said. “Firstly, there is the question of the quality of this [agreement] and then there is the question of the implementation.”

Tola said Cambodia needed a strong body of labour experts in its embassy in Doha to monitor workers’ conditions.

“There should be regular inspections,” Tola said. “They should be carried out once every month or once every two months, and monitors’ reports should be available to civil society and made public.”

The government should also consider the types of workers sent to Qatar, he added.

“Unskilled workers and less knowledgeable migrant workers often pick up the high-risk jobs,” he said. “Those people should be given the opportunity to get jobs [in Cambodia].”

An Bunhak, chairman of the Association of Cambodian Recruitment Agencies, could not be reached yesterday.

To contact the reporters on this story: Sen David at [email protected]t.com
Shane Worrell at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman