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Mayor Touts Jobs Plan to Keep Fighting Unemployment

Some 200,000 new posts are to be created to ease the current employment pressure in the capital city of South China's Guangdong Province, top officials said Wednesday.

Zhang Guangning, mayor of the city, said great efforts would be taken to tackle the unemployment problem and keep the unemployment rate under 4 percent this year.

He revealed this in his government report to the second plenary session of the 12th Guangzhou People's Congress which opened Wednesday.

According to Guo Xiling, director of the Guangzhou Municipal Financial Bureau, 150 million yuan (US$18.1 million) will be used as a special fund to promote re-employment in the city.

Another 20 million yuan (US$2.41 million) will be spent guaranteeing the basic life support for laid-off people, Guo said.

The re-employment rate of the laid-off workers is set to reach 60 percent this year, revealed Zhang's report.

The registered unemployment rate was 3.37 percent last year, up 0.01 point over that in 2002.

That means the targeted unemployment rate of under 4 percent is reasonable, one analyst said. The increasing number of migrant workers and college graduates from outside Guangdong flooding to the province have been imposing pressure on the city's employment situation.

In 2003 alone, Guangzhou received 39,000 graduates, including 21,000 from other provinces and regions, according to statistics with Guangzhou Municipal Human Resources Administration.

There were 1.12 million migrant workers registered in the city last year, and it is estimated to rise 10 percent this year, according to Xiao Li, an official with Guangzhou Municipal Labour and Social Security Bureau.

And the total number of migrant workers in the province is 20 million.

(China Daily March 25, 2004)


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