Garment workers in the Southeast Asian nation of Cambodia are likely to get their next wage rise on January 1, 2015, as the Labour Advisory Committee (LAC) has agreed to increase salaries on January 1 each year, reports The Phnom Penh Post.
At the tripartite LAC meeting, attended by representatives of the Ministry of Labour, the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC) and trade unions, agreed to increase salaries of those employed in the garment factories on January 1 each year, with the decision on the amount of wage increase to be finalized in the fourth quarter of each preceding year.
So far, decisions on increasing minimum wages in Cambodian garment factories were taken at irregular intervals by the LAC, without using any particular formula for determining wage scales.
Last year, the LAC raised minimum monthly wage from US$ 80, including a $5 health bonus, to $95, which met with protests from workers who were demanding the wage to be doubled to $160. However, Minister Sam Heng subsequently intervened to raise the minimum wage to $100 per month, which was implemented from February 2014.
According to the new agreement, the LAC will meet in the third quarter of each year to decide on the next year’s wage rise, and will vote on a specific number in the fourth quarter, which would come into effect every January 1.
The 28-member LAC would hold up to three meetings to arrive at a unanimous decision on wage rise, failing which a decision by majority vote would be taken in the third meeting to determine the next year’s new wage.
The exports of garments and textiles from Cambodia grew by 8.98 percent to $ 1.173 billion in January-March 2014, compared to exports of $1.076 billion made during the same period last year, according to the consolidated data released by the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC).