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Compulsory Labor Contracts to Be Imposed on All Firms
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It will take three years to get all businesses, construction firms in particular, to sign labor contracts with all their employees, said Hu Xiaoyi, a spokesman for the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, at a press conference in Beijing on Thursday.

"We'll take these next three years informing all businesses of the obligation to implement the Labor Law and have employers sign labor contracts with their employees," he said.

During the first three quarters of 2005, more than 230,000 labor dispute cases involving 560,000 laborers were reported. Over 90 percent of them were settled.

Noting that some employers currently fail to abide by the Labor Law, Wu said the three-year plan for action will focus mainly on private businesses, restructured state-owned enterprises and construction businesses.

In the four years from 2001 to 2005, some 4.2 million institutions were inspected and 1.06 million cases of illegal employment uncovered by 3,277 labor inspection authorities above the county level.

More than 34 million employees had signed labor contracts, which entitled them to 14.9 billion yuan (US$1.9 billion) in social insurance paid for by their employers.

(Xinhua News Agency January 20, 2006)

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