Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Foreigners working in Cambodia face permit fines

Foreigners working in Cambodia face permit fines

Officials check the documents of Chinese workers in November 2016 in Phnom Penh. Officials have warned delinquent foreign workers to obtain documentation. National Police
Officials check the documents of Chinese workers in November 2016 in Phnom Penh. Officials have warned delinquent foreign workers to obtain documentation. National Police

Foreigners working in Cambodia face permit fines

About 100,000 foreigners working without permits will be fined after Khmer New Year and potentially face jail time and deportation if they fail to get paperwork or pay their fines, the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Labour announced yesterday.

Speaking to the press after a meeting with Immigration Department General Director Sok Phal, Labour Ministry official Seng Sakda said those who have previously been working in the Kingdom without a permit would have to pay 400,000 riel, or about $100, for each year they are found to be noncompliant. There would also be a fine for anyone who does not apply for a work permit by Khmer New Year in mid-April.

“We have not fined yet, and we give one month until Khmer New Year and we will review . . . Once they do not come and make the card and work permit . . . we will fine them based on the Labour Law,” Sakda said. This fine, he said, would range between $600 and $900.

Phal said foreigners who refused to pay the fine could face up to three months in prison and deportation, “or they will be deported directly without imprisonment”.

“Foreigners working and investing in Cambodia at enterprises and all casinos . . . We could see in 2017, they have not fulfilled the obligation [to apply for a work permit],” he said.

This announcement comes a few days after Kem Sarin, the head of administration at the Immigration Department, announced that about 57,000 workers – 30,000 of them Chinese – had received a work permit but that about 100,000 were still without. He added that many companies were uncooperative.

“They continue to employ and hide foreign workers illegally without reporting the number of workers,” he said, adding this caused a loss of about $23 million in government revenue.

According to an annual report from the Immigration Department, 1,389 foreigner workers were fined last year for not having a work permit.


  • 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

  • Australian police investigating death threat against Kem Ley's widow

    Updated: 10:17am, Friday March 23, 2018 Australian authorities on Thursday confirmed they have launched an investigation into a crudely written death threat sent tothe family of slain political analyst Kem Ley and Victoria state MP Hong Lim. The typed letter, reported to Victoria police last week, is

  • Apparel groups including H&M and Gap urge Cambodia garment industry reform, seek meeting with Hun Sen

    A group representing some of the largest apparel brands in the US and Europe – including Gap, H&M and ASOS – expressed “growing concern” on Tuesday over several controversial labour laws and ongoing court cases against unionists described as restrictive and unjust. In an open letter

  • Cambodia, states clash at UN session

    Cambodia traded shots with the international community in a heated exchange at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Thursday evening, with states condemning the Kingdom’s ongoing crackdown on the political opposition and civil society, and an increasingly agitated Cambodia accusing member states