Nearly 40 percent of the companies based in the Guangzhou-centered Pearl River Delta are considering pay rises for their employees this year, according to a recent survey conducted by the local statistical bureau.
The Guangdong Provincial Bureau of Statistics surveyed 35,000 companies in nine cities in the region toward the end of 2004 on their recruitment situation and compensation package. All the respondent firms employed more than 50 people.
About 75 percent of the employers said they may offer pay raises, which would be within five percent, according to the survey.
For all the temporary workers in Guangdong Province, the average pay raise was 3.5 percent in 2004. Skilled workers reported 4.7 percent increase in their average wage, the fastest among all migrant laborers last year. Pay rise for blue-collar workers averaged 4.4 percent, while that for project management personnel was only 1.6 percent.
The booming province currently suffers a severe shortage of migrant laborers, particularly young blue-collar workers who fuel its prosperous manufacturing industry.
The companies surveyed would need to recruit 16,392 workers in total this year, 66.2 percent of whom would be blue-collar workers to fill openings at electronic components assembly lines, packaging workshops, civil construction sites and shoe factories.
A separate survey by the same bureau found the province would be short of at least one million migrant workers this year. A number of labor-intensive firms were having difficulties in recruiting enough of their ideal employees: young, strong rural laborers with low wage expectations.
On the other hand, the bureau found the booming regional economy and growing export have given birth to more businesses and encouraged existing companies to expand production. The number of migrant workers is consequently not enough to fill up all the vacancies.
According to the latest statistics available, 86,000 new businesses were registered in Guangdong Province in the first nine months of 2004, up 7.8 percent from a year earlier.
(Xinhua News Agency February 26, 2005)