“They [buyers] are the ones who set the margin, not us,” he said, warning that if Cambodia raises the minimum wage it would “have to be prepared for what comes after,” hinting that companies may choose to relocate.
However, several big brands contacted by media denied they were cutting wages.
Swedish fashion giant H&M, which in October last year was forced to deny accusations that it encouraged “slave-like” wages at a subcontractor’s factory, said it was not directly responsible for the factories producing its garments.
“H&M does not own any factories and therefore does not set or pay factory workers’ wages,” company spokesman Malin Bjorne said, adding that Cambodian factories produce for many brands.
“The employees at a factory are paid the same wages regardless of which brand they are producing garments for — and regardless of what the final price will be in the store,” Bjorne said.