Today I am so pleased to join with all of you in this graduation and diploma presenting ceremony for 3,829 students of the National Technical Training Institute (NTTI). We may notice that this time our rally is facing north. Secondly, our MC today is a professional wise man for (traditional Cambodian wedding). He is also Under Secretary of State for Religious Affairs as well. I just bring it to your attention that the cool breeze from the north starts and if anyone is going to couple life, Mr. Phuong is the best wise man to carry the marriage tradition through …
More Students Take up Studies at NTTI
We are on a march towards development and training in all fields has been important. HE Ith Sam Heng, Minister of Labour and Vocational Training, has just made a report about progress made so far by NTTI. You may have remembered that after the liberation from the regime of Pol Pot, the Institute was restored by assistance of the former Soviet Union. I could remember that there were not many students taking up studies then. It is now a different matter. Why there were not many students in those days? It was because there were not high demands for technical expertise in the job market. In those days, we did not have many foreign investments and it required not many technicians in anything. As for the present day, we have more students. I could remember that in 1996, I travelled to NTTI to make decision concerning its training objectives. As of now, we have transferred many technical training institutes, along with NTTI, formerly under supervision of the Ministry of Education, Youth, and Sports to the Minister of Labour.
Creation of New Ministries in Third and Fourth-Term RGC
I also remember that in its third-term RGC, we had decided to set up the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (MLVT). The fact that I bring this matter up is to illustrate leadership efforts in organizing concerned and necessary institutes. We had had a number of ministries but later in 1993. As one instance, we had decided to split the former Ministry of Communication, Transports and Posts into two – the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunication, and the Ministry of Transports and Public Works. Until 1998, we noticed that there had higher demand for us to consider setting up another ministry for land management, urban planning and construction. We later brought up the Ministry of Water Resource and Meteorology, which formerly was a General Directorate under the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries […]
In the fourth-term RGC, we observed that there was a high demand for us to respond to labour and vocational training. As we had a political stalemate for one year after the general elections in 2003, it had taken us until 2004 to start working on that. It was because of the two-third majority proportional representation elections system, the party that lost the elections then held the party that won the elections hostage. The Cambodian People’s Party then had only 73 seats out of the required 82 seats to create the electoral Cabinet. It was in that instance that we sought for an amendment of the Constitution from two-third proportional representation elections system to 50+1 system. However, it took us one year to work it out with concerned political partner to set up the Royal Government then.
Once the Royal Government was up and running, we had created the Ministry of Labour and Vocational training. There was a need then to transfer works from former Ministry of Social and Veteran Affairs, which were under the supervision of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports to the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training. Later, in 2008, we did not need to set up any more new ministry. In 2013, there was a real need to expedite public administrative reforms. We then abolished the national committee on administrative reforms. We had transformed the Secretariat of Public Functions as the Ministry of Public Functions, which is leading speedy reforms.
We later found out that the Ministry of Industry, Mines, and Energy is rather huge in its works. We then initiated another reform of the leadership by establishing the Ministry of Mines and Energy to overlook and manage issues relating to mines and energy, oil and oil authority included. A part of the formerly Ministry of Industry, Mines, and Energy takes over the works on industry and handicrafts. I have brought these issues up for you to see how we went about transforming our leading institutions.
Job Market Demands
Just now, I mentioned about the initial stage when there were no students interested in taking up studies in area of technology. NTTI was then almost idle. There was a student, whom we sent to study in the former East Germany. His education background was low and he could not follow education there. The host country thought of transferring him to specialized technical training. The student then decided that he returned to Cambodia because with technical training, he would not know where to find jobs. At present, the situation has changed and thousands of students are receiving training in NTTI and various other technical institutes. In the course of my visit to provinces, as you know that we now have many other schools, the Korean run one is included, I took my time to see some of the students. Many had told me about their wishes to study this or that subject, in this or that school, as there has proven demand for technicians. There is certain demand for numerous expertises and it may not always be the case that they only managers. Take for instance the Exhibition Centre of Koh Pich, they need many technicians – electricians, mechanics, etc. to make the whole operation going.
Training Need for Agricultural and Small-Scale Transport Vehicles
I had said before that I see the interest in getting training for mechanical reparations of agricultural and small-scale transports vehicles. You may notice that water pumps and pulled tractors scatter throughout the country. There may not be sufficient number of mechanics everywhere. Some people may and some may not know how to fix them. They may have to transport them for mechanical help away from home. You may have the impression that Hun Sen wishes people to only mind about trivial things such as fixing pumps, motorcycles and pulled tractors. Well, that is where you are making money. Sometimes, when you aim too high, it turns out to be impossible to find jobs.
In restaurants, for instance, if you do not have this team of cooks, how could it go? In Phnom Penh today, there are so many restaurants. If they do not have chefs, or good ones, or not ones with strict disciples and hygiene, they would not be able to attract customers. Well, if you can go higher, you may just do it. Look, you may learn about Pacquiao the boxer in the Philippines, He started out as a kid sheltering himself under other people’s extending roof. Now Pacquiao is one the millionaires who spent 150 million USD in building homes for homeless people. Many successful people started their lives from poverty and made themselves up stage after stage. I was a pagoda boy myself […]
Cambodia Will Become Active Labour Industry Next Year
I may have to bring up a story and before telling you this, I wish to ask for an apology from Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar. That I bring this matter up is because some people have used her remarks to fight me. I said something in Hanoi though I did not say it directly to the President of Myanmar. In the World Economic Forum relating to the Mekong Area, I made a point that before Cambodia was a labour intensive industry country, or we used cheap labour. At present, Cambodia cannot use that term anymore. Cambodia has now reached a time when we will exercise minimum salary of 153 USD/month, started from 30 USD/month. We will move into labour active industry next year. As of present, the minimum salary is 140 USD/month and in a few months’ time we would reach a new minimal level of 153 USD/month, or between 170 USD and 180 USD, plus other benefits.
I may have your attention that in Laos, labourers would receive their minimum salary of 100 USD, while in Myanmar they get only 80 USD/month. On a visit to Thailand, State Counsellor and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Myanmar, Aug San Suu Kyi told the Myanmarese migrant workers “let’s go home.” It was when in Myanmar, minimum salary of workers was only 67 USD, according to a website. We may round it up to 80 USD. Seeing that, some politicians in Cambodia posted my picture in social media mocking me saying that “let’s go find work in Thailand.” I am urging them to break a rock to remember this. Let us wait and see if Myanmarese migrant workers return home for work? You may not have to believe me now but wait and see.
Myanmar Faces Cheap Labour Challenges
It is because of two problems. Firstly, would the roughly two million Myanmarese workers go back for jobs in their country? In which case, Myanmar would need to create two million jobs. If so, would those two million workers in Thailand get those jobs? If they do, the jobs created would only serve the growing need for jobs for people, who finished their studies and craved for jobs inside the country. Secondly, in Thailand, those migrant workers made between 200 USD and 300 USD per month. Would you think they go back to get 67 USD? In Cambodia, while our minimum salary is 153 USD/month, our labourers would still want to find jobs in Thailand. If they created jobs for two or three million people with minimal salary between 200 and 300 USD, they would in that case attract them. Otherwise, it is hopeless. People who mocked me on this may have to mark somewhere on a rock of what I said and what they say […]
Works, Emigrants, Immigrants
In this era, not only Cambodia who has their workers migrated for jobs in other country. We even have sought out jobs for our people abroad too. We did that in Korea and we are working on more job markets in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, etc., in the Persian Gulf area. In Malaysia, we suspended female workers emigrants and we did a lot of work to facilitate workers to have legal work permit to Thailand. We should also remember that Thailand has had to send their workers out to Taiwan, the Middle East, etc., where they earn more money. They allow immigrant workers from Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar, to address their labour shortage. Take the Philippines for instance they have over ten million emigrant workers to other countries in the world. About ten thousand of them are in Cambodia working in bars, restaurants and homes […]
Demand in Local Job Market Goes High
I could recall a case of SARS when Cambodia was rotating chair of ASEAN in 2002/3. In our discussion, me, (HE) Goh Chok Tong, and Thaksin, were of the opinion that there was urgent need to convene a meeting to discuss how to deal with this issue. Due to some difficulties, we had asked Thailand to organize such meeting and I would come and chair it. We then had the presences of then Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa. Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, (Abdullah Ahmad) Badawi then came in replacement of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad.
We had come to a measure that whoever found to have SARS in any country, s/he would have to stay and get treatment in that country until s/he recovered. We should not let her/him loose or s/he would bring SARS to other places and people. Then President of the Philippines, Gloria Arroyo suggested that they should have access to jobs as well. Malaysia’s Badawi then responded how could we do it for outsiders when we could not even find works for our people. That is how I could recall from the meeting. You can ponder now that as far as job market is concerned, we have both local and external job markets. As for now, there is increasing demand for labours in local job markets.
Working to Keep Factories in Our Country
Every time the Japanese company came and saw me for their investments, they always brought up two issues – firstly, skilled labour and labour costs. Japan is one of the richest countries but they did not care less about how much they would need to pay for labour. Secondly, they always asked about electricity or energy. I may warn you all not to overlook these issues. You do not have the experience of holding power and managing the country.
As history proved, there was a time when you had schools but people were not very much interested because of lack of demand for such skills in the job market. As for this time around, we have thousands of people here – 8,573 have graduated, and 3,911 are still pursuing their studies. This is the figure from one school. We have about a hundred of training institutes like this. Please do not have unhappy feeling about the fact that Hun Sen told you to do trivial things and not to become a Minister. We need people in every kind of jobs. The fact that I have brought this matter up is because I wish to show you competition that we are facing in the time to come. You may remember to seek for jobs and retain what we have today.
Use Acquired Technology for Works and Better Knowhow
Country like Myanmar would lure factories from our country because they are in cheap labour stage. We must work to strengthen technical capability of our workers to increase better quality for products. Doing this, we will be able to maintain factories and ensure training of human resource to cater to new investments in industry, service, and even agricultural sectors. According to statistics, in agricultural sector, animals worked on only about 8% of the total land under cultivation. In the past, animals would do 95% of them […]
This above has indeed indicated progress made in our country in relation to vocational training and labour for our people inside and outside the country. I would take this opportune moment to express my sincere appreciation for the good works accomplished by the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training, and for the graduates who will receive their diplomas today. I hope that you will make use of the acquired knowledge for finding jobs and for improving your knowhow and skills to a better level […]
If Donald Trump Wins, US-Russia Relation Better; US-China Relation Stays Good
… The other day I made an analysis of world political polarizations. I would keep a copy for Trump, no matter if he wins or loses. Many people made their analysis and comments to what I said. Winning or losing is for the American people to decide. My analysis was that if the Democrats win, I already knew Hilary Clinton (and I never knew Trump), the Sino-US relations would be manageable because the twos have conflict resolving mechanism and promote cooperation between the two countries as trade partners. However, the US-Russian relations would not be great because of sanction that the US placed on Russia. If the Democrats continue to be in power, the sanction may go on. That was my analysis. It was my right. Why did they call Trump a dictator? They said many dictators support Donald Trump and they named Putin, Mugabe, and Hun Sen, included.
I think I would have to send them all to Trump, no matter if he wins or loses. If Trump were to win, the situation between Russia and the US would improve, while the US relation with China continues to be fine. This will make the world atmosphere better and the economy will progress. Why did they say I humiliate Hilary? What a twist. Let me tell you, I will send whatever you said against me on the matter to Donald Trump, no matter if he wins or loses. While you are saying that you have rights to say anything, I also wish to tell you that I also have rights to do so on internal and external issues.
Winning or losing for any one of the two candidates is indeed the US people to decide but for external political vision, we must look on to a more general conceptual political framework. For instance, when HM the King of Thailand passed away, I had to order our troops to stay still not to cause any misunderstanding. I went to the Thai Embassy in Phnom Penh, and I went to Bangkok too to convey our final respect. We have heard that there will be a new King on 1 December. Why did I go out on Trump, the US elections? Well, as a powerful country, what happens in the US would have tremendous relations to every part of the world, let alone Asia-Pacific. What would happen to TPP? What would the relationship between powerful nations be? Well, I think this is rights in making understanding and analysis. I do not get it when some came out and blamed Trump to be a dictator because Hun Sen, Putin, etc. support him. What a naïve thing to have in mind […]
National Independence Day and Water Festival
In days ahead, we will celebrate the 63rd National Independence Day on 9 November. The water festival will follow. Let me send a message to people everywhere who will come to enjoy the festivity to watch out for incurable disease such as HIV/AIDS. I have noted the efforts made by the Ministry of Health, and National AIDS Authority, on the matter. I would suggest that before leaving home, you should make sure there is sufficient water in your rice field. In my father’s day, my mother would complain about my father’s absence for the boat race event. People residing along the river, at this time of year would be busy with dry-season rice cultivation. My father would be busy with boat race event. He would not miss it for the world. There might be about some 250 boats only this year because transporting them to the Mekong River would be a colossal task.
… How high would the water level be at the festival time is hard to predict. There have been lots of rain and it has fluctuated water level. According to HE Lim Kean Hor, Minister of Water Resource and Meteorology, whose report I usually receive at 5am, and this morning at 6:20am, the rainy season is approaching its end. There will be some small ones along. As for the boat race, it would be best to have water level at 6 meters – 7 metres would be rather not good and below six would not be perfect too. Even 5.5 metres would be fine. Last year the water level was only four meters. The police force also will dispose and publicize on social media photos of thieves. I would say it is even better to stick flyers in certain places.
Cambodia to Head for High-Tech Industry
… I am making appeal to every graduate who received their diplomas today to make further efforts to step on from the current stage to a higher level. Our country needs to go to the next level of development and the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training must continue to strengthen capacity of trainers to achieve higher training quality helping with our march into the stage of high-tech industry […]/.