Last October inflation was starting to become an issue, now it’s become a big issue. Below are just a few things I heard or read over the weekend. Apparently prices in 2008 will be 30% higher than in 2007.
*Yesterday I went to an English language Christian church service. On the hand out there was a note encouraging members of the congregation to consider what kind of pay rise they should be giving their staff.
*Also yesterday was a protest in town against the price increases, click here for photos or here to read a Yahoo News article about it.
*Pork sellers are selling less pork; people can’t afford to buy so much food these days. But sellers of charcoal are having a boom because cooking gas is so expensive.
*Many people from all over Cambodia live in Phnom Penh and work in factories. On the front of the Phnom Penh Post this fortnight is an article about how many are going back to the provinces. The cost of living in the city is becoming too great. Rent, food everything is going up so fast. Apparently there might be a $6 a month wage increase, but people say this is still not enough, it doesn’t reflect the magnitude of inflation. (I think the minimum factory workers wage is $50 per month. And it seems people are here so they can earn money to send to their families in the provinces.)
“Cambodia’s annualised rate of food inflation hit 24% last month- the highest in almost a decade, and one of the highest in the region.” (PP Post, Cat Barton, April 4-17 2008)