2018 28 August

Cambodia Legal Alert: 2019 Foreign Employee Quota Application Window to Open Shortly


We wish to take this opportunity to advise enterprises wishing to employ foreign employees in 2019 that the application window for the 2019 foreign employee quota will open on 1 September 2018.

On 20 August 2018, the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (“MLVT”) issued Notification 028/18 confirming that all quota applications must be submitted via the MLVT’s online system between 1 September 2018 to 30 November 2018. Once the foreign employee quota approval is secured, work permits must be renewed for each foreign employee from 1 January 2019 to 31 March 2019.  It is, therefore, crucial to plan ahead in order to secure your right to employ foreign employees in 2019. 

Under the quota system, a maximum of 10% of an employer’s total local workforce may be foreign nationals (based on a calculation of foreign employees/local employees), comprised of office employees (3%), skilled labour employees (6%) and unskilled labour employees (1%).  With its new online system, the MLVT is adhering more strictly to the 10% foreign employee limit.  An increase in the quota is subject to approval of the MLVT on a case-by-case basis.

The foreign employee quota applies to every employer in Cambodia with foreign staff, including representative offices, branches, limited liability companies and NGOs.

Failure to comply with the foreign employee quota could result in the imposition of fines for each offense of up to USD630 by the MLVT and/or USD900 by a court.  There are also retroactive fines of KHR 405,000 (approximately USD 100) for each year that a foreign national has worked in Cambodia without a valid work permit. In serious circumstances, imprisonment sentences may be imposed for up to one month.

In light of the above, with our collaborating Cambodian counsel, we would be pleased to assist your enterprise in preparing and submitting the 2019 foreign employee quota with the relevant labor authority.

If you require our assistance with respect to any of the above matters, please do not hesitate to contact labor.kh@dfdl.com.

The information provided here is for information purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Legal advice should be obtained from qualified legal counsel for all specific situations.

DFDL Contacts

Chris Robinson
Partner, Head of Cambodia Corporate & Commercial Practice Group

Sinoun Sous
Consultant, Cambodia Corporate & Commercial Practice Group

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