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Chinese Farmers Receive Training to Seek Fortunes in City
China's Ministry of Agriculture started to offer professional training to rural migrant workers incities in a bid to help them obtain more lucrative jobs.

Zhang Hongyu, deputy director of the ministry's Policies and Regulations Department was quoted by Monday's China Daily as saying that training farmers seeking fortunes in urban areas is imperative as most of them lack the technical skills that jobs in cities are increasingly requiring.

The year of 2002 saw 94 million rural migrant workers, plus 20 million of their families migrated to cities. But only 12 percent of them received senior high school education and still fewer of them have technical training, according to ministry sources.

Zhang said farmers with little technical skills have found themselves in a disadvantaged position when seeking to be employedin cities on a decent salary as China's economic boom towns in coastal areas, as well as some eastern provinces, have shifted from labor-intensive businesses to workplaces requiring technologyand skills.

The ministry has just concluded a trial scheme offering training for farmers in six rural counties in areas that include Chongqing Municipality of southwest China and Jiangxi Province in east China.

The project will continue this year and it is expected to involve more regions in the years ahead, said Minister of Agriculture Du Qinglin.

(Xinhua News Agency April 14, 2003)

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