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Civil servants won’t see pay raises next year due to Covid

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Prime Minister Hun Sen announced that due to uncertain economic conditions, the government will suspend salary increases for civil servants in 2021. SPM

Civil servants won’t see pay raises next year due to Covid

Prime Minister Hun Sen announced that due to uncertain economic conditions, the government will suspend salary increases for civil servants and the armed forces next year.

The government, however, will spend $10 million to pay retired officials.

Prime Minister Hun Sen made the remarks while presiding over the grand opening ceremony of the Prince Manor entertainment complex located on National Road 1 in Kandal province on Wednesday.

“[Economy and Finance Minister] Aun Porn Moniroth was planning to increase salaries, but I asked him to suspend the increase for 2021. So, I’m sorry in advance,” he said.

At the same time, the prime minister confirmed that civil servants will keep the same salary and the allowance for the New Year and Pchum Ben is still provided.

He said the government is also paying attention to veterans and retirees and increasing their payments.

“Previous retirees’ salary was only 400,000 riel ($97). After deductions, only 300,000 riel remains. If compared to retirees presently, the salary is one million riel. Thus, there is a difference between previous retirees and present ones. So we will spend about $10 million to ensure previous retirees are not far behind,” he said.

Long Rim, a member of the board of directors of the Cambodian Independent Teachers Association, said while the government is suspending increases for civil servants, it should also consider the flow of goods in the market to avoid excessive price increases.

“The government always raises the salaries of civil servants every year, no matter how small or large, so that civil servants can survive. If salaries do not increase but the prices of goods on the market continue to rise, it will affect the lives of civil servants,” he said.

Prey Veng provincial Retirement Pension Office director Min Tha said the government has increased the retirement pension of civil servants every year based on the salaries of the officials. He said retired officials with lower salaries can see an increase in the range of 20,000 to 30,000 riel in one year.

“There are more than 3,000 retired civil servants in my province and the lowest salary is 600,000 riel,” he said.

Ministry of Civil Service spokesman Youk Bunna said retired civil servants who received a pension increase are those who retired by 2014 before the government integrated civil servants into the new system.

“Therefore, civil servants who retired by 2014 got a pension according to their old salary, which explains the salary gap between previous officials and current retired officials,” Bunna said.

He said the total number of civil servants and veterans who have retired nationwide is more than 100,000.


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