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More than 10,000 workers suspended

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Svay Rieng deputy governor Ros Pharith said during a press conference at the Council of Ministers on Tuesday. Hean Rangsey

More than 10,000 workers suspended

More than 10,000 workers at 18 factories in Svay Rieng province have been suspended because of Covid-19, said provincial deputy governor Ros Pharith.

Home to 11 special economic zones, Pharith said Svay Rieng has not been spared as the pandemic takes a toll on the global economy.

“There are 18 factories that have suspended work as of July 2. This has affected 10,628 workers,” he said, during a press conference at the Council of Ministers on Tuesday.

Despite the closure, Pharith touted the province’s progress in dealing with a downturn amid the pandemic.

“The province has 11 special economic zones with eight of them in operation. There are 216 enterprises, factories, companies, banks, and microfinance institutions. There are 113 factories and enterprises that provide work to over 80,000 people.

“By practising an open policy and government encouragement for the private sector, Svay Rieng has developed noticeably,” he said.

As a solution to unemployment due to the latest factory suspensions, he said the provincial administration followed the government’s support policy, with each suspended worker receiving $40 from the government and $30 from the employer.

If workers who lost their jobs reach poverty status, the government will also provide support money through the Poor Card issued by relevant authorities, he said.

“Through the government’s support for the poor, each family can receive between 120,000 riel and 200,000 riel [$30 to $50), depending on the family’s condition. Workers who lost a job can also farm, plant crops and raise cattle,” he said.

Svay Rieng boasts two towns, six districts, 80 communes and 690 villages, with a total population of 642,713, said a report released by the provincial administration.

The province also has eight border checkpoints, including two international ones, two bilateral border gates, and four local borders that facilitate travel and the transport of goods. The checkpoints have been temporarily closed due to the novel coronavirus.

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