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Ministry, IOM committed to migrant workers’ rights

Minister of Labour and Vocational Training Heng Sour met with Kristin Parco, Head of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Mission in Cambodia, at the Ministry on Monday.

During the meeting, both parties discussed the orientation information provided to migrant workers prior to their departure abroad.

Sour said the Ministry’s strategic plan is to enable migrant workers to receive maximum protection and benefits, which is the goal of the government.

Sour thanked Parco for establishing cooperation and support for the Ministry in the past and to continue to strengthen the management mechanism for migrants to be more effective and beneficial in the future.

Parco reiterated her continued support for the government, in particular on migration management.

Ministry spokesman Katta Orn said yesterday the meeting between the two sides was to study the policy, strategy, and other priority programmes of the Ministry towards strengthening governance and labour migration management, promoting protection, skills development, the successful integration of migrant workers, increasing potential of oversees work, and how the IOM can best support the Ministry in achieving its strategic goals.

“The Ministry continues and expands cooperation with countries that receive Cambodian workers, the private sector, and NGOs to ensure that a legitimate migration is fully supported by the host country to improve the lives of migrant workers, and provide additional support. At the end of their term, the workers can return to Cambodia,” he added.

The Ministry and IOM have been working together to compile orientation information for workers before leaving for work abroad.

In 2010, the Ministry and IOM compiled a pre-departure orientation guide for migrant workers going to Thailand, Malaysia, and Kuwait.

“The Royal Government, through the Ministry, is committed to promoting the rights of migrant workers abroad,” Orn said,

“The Ministry cooperates with development partners to ensure that Cambodian workers are fully aware of their labour and legal rights when abroad as migrant workers,” he added.

A programme officer with the labour rights group Central, De The Hoya, said yesterday that to prevent trafficking, the government should disseminate more information to workers regarding job scams and illegal trafficking, and take action against companies that use fraudulent methods to lure Cambodian workers to foreign countries.

He wants to see effective implementation in the prevention of human trafficking in Cambodia to protect migrant workers, by ensuring their safety and upholding their human rights.

In 2023, the Ministry provided employment opportunities abroad to 1,355,936 people, of whom 552,851 were women.

Around 1,262,175 Cambodian migrant workers are in Thailand, 50,970 in South Korea, 22,262 in Malaysia, 20,056 in Japan, 871 in Singapore and 218 in Hong Kong.

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