Blog: Leonie BarrieCambodia's conundrum

Leonie Barrie | 9 May 2007

Cambodia’s clothing manufacturers are caught between a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, they fear the country’s high overheads and wages make it difficult to compete with cheaper countries such as Bangladesh and Vietnam. On the other, though, there is also a danger that labour disputes could damage investment and dissuade retailers and importers from doing business with the country’s garment industry.

The sector has recently been hit by attacks on labour leaders, including the murders of three union bosses, which has prompted complaints from several international companies doing business in Cambodia, including Eddie Bauer, Gap, Hennes & Mauritz, Liz Claiborne and Phillips-Van Heusen. They say they are concerned about “what appears to be a pattern of violence against union leaders in the country,” and that a “swift, just and transparent” investigation will ensure “a stable business environment for us to continue to source our products.”

The companies were reacting to the February assassination of Hu Vuthy, president of the Free Trade Union of Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia (FTUWKC) as he left the Suntex garment factory. Hy Vuthy is the third FTUWKC official to be assassinated in three years. Chea Vichea, the union's president, was shot dead in January 2004 by two men on a motorbike. In May 2004 Ros Sovannarith, the FTUWKC president at the Trinunggal Komara factory, was similarly murdered by two men on a motorbike. In addition, Hy Vuthy's murder comes after at least five violent attacks in 2006 against FTUWKC officials at Suntex and the neighboring Bright Sky factory, also owned by Ocean Sky.

CAMBODIA: Plans to amend garment labour law lead to strike threats


BLOG

Primark's sustainable cotton programme takes shape

With the ultimate aim of ensuring all the cotton in its products is sourced sustainably, value clothing retailer Primark is adamant that having a business model focused on offering the lowest prices o...

BLOG

Trump administration starts to shake up trade

Last week we marked the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States by taking a closer look at what's at stake for the textile and apparel trade – especially his promises t...

BLOG

Likely shifts in the sourcing landscape in 2017

Continuing our look at what lies ahead for the apparel industry and its supply chain in 2017, the panel of industry experts consulted by just-style last week tackled likely shifts in the sourcing land...

BLOG

Trump trade policies and China tensions top concerns

This week our focus turns to first thoughts from a panel of industry experts consulted by just-style on the challenges and opportunities likely to face the apparel supply chain in 2017, with prospects...

just-style homepage



Forgot your password?