On the 13th of October 1994, the Labour Law came into effect. There is a requirement to keep a balance sheet of wages owed and paid to establish, a set of Internal Rules, a labour book for foreign and domestic workers and a labour registration card for all foreigners.

The law also specifies maximum probation periods, articles on termination of employees and compensation for wrongful termination. A minimum wage is not specified although there are however equal treatment provisions. The law requires one day of rest per week and there are provisions regarding sick leave, maternity leave, public holidays and annual vacation. There is also a reference to "public protest leave" which is not clearly defined.

If a business entity is operating under the license of the CDC, foreign workers can be hired at the company's discretion, with the imposed limitation that if comparable staff can be recruited from the Cambodian population locals should be employed. Non-CDC-licensed companies have much stricter regulations restricting the use of foreign workers. Other immigration legislation also has to be taken into account.

Work place safety is stressed to a point that one person must be appointed as responsible for a safe working environment. Personnel harmed on the job must be compensated, although the law does not specify figures. Liability for employee injury usually will rest with the employer.

Dispute resolution is to be undertaken firstly by means of conciliation/mediation, the court system is the last resort option. This echoes the insights held in many countries around the world when it comes to labour matters.

NOTE: The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

If you would like further advice please contact: David Ellis, Johnson Stokes & Master, 16th Floor, Princes Building, 10 Chater Road, Hong Kong; Tel 2843 4226; Fax no. : 2845 9121. Alternatively do a text search "Johnson Stokes and Master" and "Business Monitor".