Asia

Collapse at Cambodia shoe factory

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Media captionRecovery workers clearing through the debris of the collapsed shoe factory

Part of a shoe factory has collapsed in Cambodia, leaving at least two people dead, officials say.

The concrete roof at the factory in Kampong Speu province, west of Phnom Penh, crashed on to employees as they were working, a police spokesman said.

At least six people were injured, police said. Rescue workers combed through the rubble for several hours before finishing operations.

The garment industry is Cambodia's biggest employer and export earner.

More than half a million people are employed in the industry, for which the minimum wage rose this month from $61 (£40) to $75 a month. Many of the factories make clothes for the US and European markets.

Workplace safety in nations at the heart of the global garment industry has been in the spotlight in recent weeks, following the collapse of a commercial building housing garment factories in Bangladesh.

More than 1,100 people died in the disaster, which was Bangladesh's worst industrial accident.

'Brick and iron'

Minister of Social Affairs Ith Sam Heng was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying that no one else remained trapped inside the building.

One report said the weight of equipment stored on the roof caused the collapse.

"We were working normally and suddenly several pieces of brick and iron started falling on us," injured 25-year-old Kong Thary was quoted as saying by the Associated Press news agency.

The shoe factory is owned by a Taiwanese company Wing Star Shoes, which makes trainers for Japanese sports brand Asics, reports say.

In the wake of the Bangladesh tragedy, more than a dozen European companies, including discount clothing company Primark and UK supermarket chain Tesco, have signed up to a new legally-binding deal aimed at improving factory conditions in Bangladesh.

But many key US companies, including Gap Inc and Walmart, are not on board.

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