Minister of Environment Eang Sophalleth said the ministry has taken another step towards implementing a campaign to reduce the use of plastic bags in factories and manufacturing enterprises, with unions voicing their support for its efforts to address the issue.

Sophalleth said the participating factories are united for the beauty of Cambodia.

“I thank all 2,412 workers of four factories who join the campaign to reduce the use of plastic bags,” he said in a social media post.

The factories are Meng Tong Garment Manufacturing, Meng Yee Garment Manufacturing, Meng Yang Garment Manufacturing & Construction Services, and Minmax (Cambodia).

He also applauded the commitment of the workers, while encouraging other factories to join the campaign.

Cambodian Labour Confederation (CLC) president Ath Thorn expressed his support for the ministry’s effort in dissemination to workers.

He said plastic has impacted the environment and the vicinity of factories, thereby affecting the health of workers and local residents.

“Therefore, plastic use should be kept to a minimum, by using paper or other materials that are not as harmful to the environment and people’s health. I request to all vendors in front of the factories not to use plastic if at all possible and to use degradable paper bags so as to reduce risks to the environment,” he said.

Chum Huot, president of the Lover Environment and Society Association, also supports the move.

Huot said he has observed factories using numerous plastic bags and disposing of them in open areas. He said that once the ministry can address this issue, it will have a positive impact on the health and living conditions of workers.

The ministry has launched a plastic usage reduction campaign in schools nationwide under the banner “Today I abstain from using plastic bags”.