With the implementation of the Tenth Five-Year Plan, for National Economic
and Social Development (2001-2005) in 2001, China's labor and social security
buildup has entered a new phase of development. During the early stage
of the new century, these efforts face both problems to be solved and
new opportunities for development. The overall progress of the reform
and opening-up and modernization drive has created favorable conditions
for solving the problems of employment and social security. The further
growth of the national economy and the increase of economic strength have
provided a firm material foundation for the enlargement of employment
and the improvement of social security. The market-oriented employment
mechanism and social security system now basically in place across China
have already laid a good foundation for further promotion of the labor
and social security undertakings. At the same time, the Chinese government
is also fully aware that the employment problem in both the rural and
urban areas will remain sharp, and structural unemployment will become
more serious for a long time to come. Labor relations are expected to
become more complicated, the aging of the population and the increase
of unemployment will put more pressure on social security, and promotion
of social security in rural areas will still have a long way to go.
Targets and Tasks
The targets for labor and social security development in the early part
of this century are as follows: initially forming a comparatively complete
labor and social security system corresponding to the development level
of China's productive forces and meeting the requirements of the socialist
market economy; ensuring well-nigh full employment and basic social security
for the majority of workers; safeguarding the legal rights and interests
of both employees and employers; enhancing the material and cultural wellbeing
of rural and urban residents; and promoting economic development and social
stability. The main tasks are to gradually improve the quality of workers
and the employment structure, initially form a market-oriented employment
mechanism, strive to promote employment, standardize and improve the statistics
on unemployment rate, and control the registered rural and urban unemployment
rate to within 5 percent; actively adjust labor relations and keep them
harmonious and stable; improve the macro regulation and control system
of income distribution, work out a rational income distribution relationship,
and achieve an approximately 5 percent annual increase in both the per
capita disposable income of urban residents and the net per capita income
of rural residents; speed up the development of the urban social security
system, improve the methods and operating mechanism of fund raising, and
promote the socialization of social security management and services;
with farmers' old-age security and health security of multiple forms as
the guide, actively explore in rural areas a basic security system suited
to the socialist market economy system and the country's economic development
level and set up a system to help the weak group in society to take care
of their own life and work.
Policies and Measures Carry out an active policy for promoting employment and do everything
possible to enlarge the scale of employment. Rapid economic growth shall
be maintained, domestic demands shall be expanded, and new employment
opportunities created to the full, so as to increase total employment.
The employment structure for labor force should be improved, and great
efforts made to develop labor-intensive industries and enterprises. Tertiary
industry, small and medium-sized enterprises and the non-public sectors
of the economy shall be taken as the main channels for the enlargement
of employment. Preferential policies shall be further carried out so as
to help laid-off and jobless people to find reemployment.
Establish a unified and standardized labor market, make a unified plan
for rural and urban employment, and ameliorate the employment service
system. The reform of the labor personnel system and the household registration
system shall be deepened, and efforts made to guide the orderly flow of
the labor force between urban and rural areas or between regions so as
to promote the transfer of surplus agricultural labor. The service of
public job agencies shall be improved and community-run job agencies encouraged
to develop along healthy lines.
Improve the quality of workers in an all-round way and adopt flexible
forms of employment. The labor reserve system and employment permit system
shall be carried out. Vocational education, continuing education and reemployment
training shall be strengthened, and the professional qualification certification
system enforced. More attention shall be paid to job skill training for
rural workers, and a sound job training system established and improved
in rural areas step by step. Flexible forms of employment shall be adopted,
and finding employment on one's own encouraged.
Consolidate and improve the labor contract system, make great efforts
to carry forward the group contract system and promote the establishment
of a tripartite coordination mechanism for labor relations. Active efforts
shall be made to formulate and revise the state's basic labor standards,
and a labor standard system suitable to China's actual conditions be perfected.
The system of handling labor disputes shall be further improved, gradually
enhancing the comprehensive ability to prevent and handle labor disputes.
Promote the reform of the wage and income distribution system and establish
an incentive and restraining mechanism for income distribution. The minimum
wage system shall be improved and the wage guidelines and the guidance
price level system for the labor market be enforced across-the-board.
Efforts shall be made to continue the experiments in the collective wage
consultation system, standardize the payment of wages and guarantee the
legal rights and interests of employees with respect to their work remuneration.
Deepen the reform of the social security system, speed up the building
of the social security system and actively implement the pilot program
for its improvement. For this, we need to establish a reliable and stable
social security fund-raising mechanism, restructure financial expenditure,
increase necessary input and the amount of social security funds, and
rationally adjust the payment rate and substitution level, and improve
the operational efficiency of social security funds and the efficiency
rate of investment. The social security macro-regulation and supervision
system shall be bettered and its management level and efficiency raised,
so as to ensure the stable, healthy and orderly operation of the social
Improve the basic old-age insurance and basic medical insurance systems
and encourage employing units, where conditions are favorable, to set
up annuity and supplementary medical insurance programs for their employees.
Further steps shall be taken to improve the unemployment insurance system
and make the basic livelihood guarantee system for laid-off personnel
from state-owned enterprises part of the unemployment insurance scheme.
Development of the industrial injury and childbirth insurance systems
shall be accelerated. The basic old-age pension insurance system for employees
of state organs and institutions shall be improved. The system for ensuring
a minimum standard of living for urban residents shall be standardized.
We shall accelerate community building and promote the socialization of
social security. We shall explore diverse forms of security and push forward
the building of the basic security system in the rural areas. We need
to improve our policies concerning social relief, social mutual aid, the
special care and placement system and social welfare, and safeguard the
legal rights and interests of women, minors, the elderly and the handicapped.
Establish a supervision and management system concerning social security
funds through a combination of administrative supervision, social supervision
and internal institutional control. While establishing and improving the
social security system, we shall explore the right path for investment
management and establish a fund supervision and management system coordinative
with the fund management system in accordance with the fund management
principles of different security projects. We shall work hard to guarantee
or increase the value of the social security funds and resolve the operational
risks of the security funds, so as to safeguard social safety and stability.
Press ahead with the legal system building in the labor and social
security fields, improve the labor and social security supervision system,
steadily enhance the overall quality of supervision and law-enforcement
personnel, carry out supervision activities of diverse forms, and push
forward the organic integration of labor security supervision and law-enforcement
departments with all social sectors in implementing legal supervision.
We shall strengthen the building of the labor security management information
system and the popularization of the scientific findings in this aspect
so as to improve the scientific, standardized, institutionalized and IT
management of the labor and social security undertakings. China will continue
to actively participate in international activities in the fields of labor
and social security, and expand cooperation and exchange with other countries,
so as to continue to play its promotional role in international labor
affairs. We will adapt ourselves to the new situation arising from our
WTO entry, and work hard consistently to carry our labor and social security
cause further forward.