The current economic downturn has not yet had any obvious impact on China's employment situation, Yin Weimin, Minister of Human Resources and Social Security told Shanghai Securities News on November 3. He said the ministry is carrying out in-depth investigations and would take effective counter-measures to minimize adverse effects of the crisis.
Although China's economic growth decelerated markedly in the first three quarters of 2008, urban employment is still increasing steadily.
Yin Weimin said:"we will achieve all our employment and social security targets by the end of the year."
January to September data show that 9.36 million people found new jobs in towns and cities, 94 percent of the 2008 target of creating 10 million jobs; 4.09 million laid-off workers were re-employed, 82 percent the 5 million target for the year; 1.19 million people long-term unemployed found jobs, well above the official target of 1 million. At the end of September, there were 8.3 million registered unemployed, a rate of 4.0 percent.
Yin Weimin said: "Our achievement of employment targets is more or less in line with the corresponding period last year."
Although the economic situation has not yet had a clear impact on China, Yin cautioned that there have been some worrying signs. "Labor market statistics show that demand for labor in the third quarter declined compared with the same period of last year, and growth in employment is slowing in some areas."
Yin said in-depth investigation and research is being carried out to get an accurate picture of the situation.
He added China will continue to extend social security coverage, unemployment insurance and industrial injury compensation, and experiment with individual social insurance accounts, as well as considering other measures such as wage increases.
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(China.org.cn by Jessica Zhang, November 6, 2008)