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PM to vet NY holiday dates

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Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth requests a five-day national holiday from August 17-21. Hong Menea

PM to vet NY holiday dates

The Ministry of Economy and Finance submitted a letter to Prime Minister Hun Sen asking him to formally set a five-day national holiday from August 17-21 to make up for the Khmer New Year holiday in April that was postponed.

Finance minister Aun Pornmoniroth sent the letter on July 10.

The dates were set after a meeting between 10 ministers and representatives from nearly 10 private institutions such as the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC) and representatives of the Cambodian Tourism Federation (CTF).

The private institutions requested the August dates because they allow enough time for factories, especially the garment and footwear ones, to wrap up supply chains and export existing goods ordered before August 12.

August 12 marks the date the European Union will withdraw 20 per cent of products from the Everything But Arms (EBA) scheme.

The dates are also deemed appropriate because the Pchum Ben holiday (a festival honouring ancestors) is one month away and scheduled from September 16-18.

Business leaders hope back-to-back holidays will promote the domestic tourism sector because people can spend twice during separate holidays.

Hotel and guesthouse owners can run their businesses again and workers will get salaries before [Pchum Ben], they theorised.

Pornmoniroth wrote in his letter that the private sector requested that if factories and enterprises set a holiday different from the above-mentioned dates, they will seek approval from workers.

A delay in August tax filing until after the holiday is also requested, the letter said.

Pornmoniroth wrote that he requested the ministries of Health; Tourism; Public Works and Transport, and local authorities to cooperate to enforce safety measures.

Foreign travellers, including investors, business people, company staff, traders, skilled workers and families are required to buy a 20-day insurance policy for $90 while still making a $3,000 deposit.

On June 16, the government decided not to require foreign passengers who are diplomats to deposit $3,000 and have $50,000 in health insurance. Diplomats will also receive treatment free of charge in case they contract Covid-19.

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