Government-subsidized-interest micro credits help laid-off workers set up their own businesses as well as create new jobs.
In an office space of less than 5m2, Shi Rong is busy answering phone calls from customers who want to move homes or offices.
Shi Rong, manager of Fulinmen Moving co., is answering phone calls from customers wanting to move homes or offices in Harbin, capital city of northeast China's Heilongjiang Province. [Photo by Jiao Meng]
Established in 2007, her company now employs over 30 workers and owns 11 container trucks. Last year's turnover came to more than 1 million yuan (US$0.16 million), which made her one of the most influential moving companies in Harbin.
Moreover, she has purchased a carton factory and offers cardboard boxes to customers at lowered costs.
Few could imagine her current fortune started with 20,000 yuan (about US$3,182) in government-subsidized-interest micro credits in 2007.
As a laid-off worker who lost her job in November 2005, Shi tried many temporary jobs, such as selling fruit, baking sweet potatoes and polishing shoes, to make a living.
Unfortunately, her husband got laid off three months later. The couple then decided to start up moving company amid the booming real estate market at that time.
"We spent all of our savings on a second-hand container truck. My husband was the driver and worker. We also hired another two workers," said Shi.
At that time, business was prosperous. Before long, her company needed more trucks to keep up with the growing number of moving requests.
"I was eager to get a loan and expand my business. However, I didn't have any mortgages or guarantors."