[Employment in China: Challenges & Countermeasures] EP1: How to Create Jobs in China?

In the process of coordinating epidemic prevention and control and promoting economic development, China is now facing greater employment pressure.

According to the government work report delivered by Premier Li Keqiang at the third session of the 13th National People’s Congress on May 22, China plans to create more than 9 million new urban jobs, and keep a surveyed urban unemployment rate at around 6 percent and a registered urban unemployment rate at around 5.5 percent in 2020. China is confident that it will be able to secure jobs, and prevent and avoid large-scale unemployment.

How can job demand be created, to absorb the unemployed labor force?

On April 17, the meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee emphasized the need to increase domestic demand. At present, the coronavirus has spread across the world, overseas market demand is suppressed, and the global supply chain is facing the risk of disruption. Increasing domestic demand is conducive to maintaining the integrity and smoothness of China’s domestic industrial and supply chains and creating favorable conditions for rapid economic recovery.

The ongoing fiscal measures to increase domestic demand cover three categories and involve 23 policies. Total expenditure budget amounted to 1.3 trillion yuan (about US$183 billion), of which over 500 billion yuan (about US$70.4 billion) has been implemented.

Moreover, releasing structural potential is a necessary solution to address demand for jobs in the long term.

The remarkable achievements of China’s economy in the past four decades are mainly attributed to the structural potential released by technological progress, upgraded industrial and consumption structures and industry, and rapid urbanization.

The effective use of structural potential requires a greater role played by supply-side policies, which calls for prioritizing the pursuit of supply-side structural reform and promoting the continuous upgrade of the supply structure.

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