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  • Author: Sandra Polaski
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: A UNIQUE AND SUCCESSFUL INTERNATIONAL POLICY EXPERIMENT has been under way in Cambodia for the last six years. In the country's export apparel factories, working conditions and labor rights are monitored by inspectors from the International Labor Organization (ILO), an international public organization. The results of the inspections are published in credible, highly transparent reports that describe in detail whether the factories are in compliance with national labor laws and internationally agreed basic labor rights. These reports are published on the Internet, and a range of Cambodian and international actors use them. The U.S. government uses the reports as a key input for decisions under an innovative scheme that allows Cambodian firms to sell more apparel in the U.S. market if they improve working conditions and respect workers' rights. Private retail apparel firms that buy from Cambodian factories also use the reports. These buyers, conscious of their brand reputations, use the reliable information they find in the reports to steer orders toward compliant factories and away from noncompliant ones.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Cambodia, Southeast Asia