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China says jobless rate lowest in years, but challenges persist

Unemployment rate falls to 3.95% by end-September

Yawen Chen & Christian Shepherd | Reuters  |  Beijing 

China, China's unemployment rate

has hit its lowest point in multiple years at 3.95 per cent by the end of September, but employment still face challenges as the pushes ahead with structural reforms, China’s labour ministry said on Sunday.

The ministry of human resources and social security said in a statement that 10.97 million new jobs had been created in from January to September this year, a growth of 300,000 compared with the previous year.

The figure represents having essentially fulfilled the ministry’s year-end target, the ministry said in a pre-prepared statement given to reporters.

Despite being ahead of schedule, Yin Weimin, head of the ministry, told reporters that “raising the capacity to employ workers overall still faces large pressures.” “We need to create 15 million jobs per year,” Yin said, singling out China’s more than 8 million new university graduates that enter the job market each year as one group in need of additional employment.

Yin also said the low in the face of an overall slowdown in the was largely due to the new internet and entrepreneurship, adding that the ministry would actively support start-ups to help them “thrive”.

From 2015 to 2020 every one percent increase in is expected to equal roughly 1.8 million new jobs, Yin said.

Premier Li Keqiang said in March that added 13.14 million new urban jobs in 2016 and aims to add another 11 million this year while keeping the registered below 4.5 per cent.
US disappointed by China’s slow reform, says Trump official 


The US has been disappointed this year at China’s lack of progress in pursuing market-oriented reforms, said a senior administration official, ratcheting up the pressure on the Chinese ahead of President Donald Trump’s visit there next month. While had made progress in previous decades toward market pricing and reducing the number of state-owned enterprises, the US is concerned now with Chinese government subsidies, excess capacity, and its industrial policy, said the official, who asked not to be identified.
The labour ministry’s announcement was made as part of a once-every-five-years congress of the ruling Communist Party, which opened last Wednesday and runs until Tuesday.

At the congress, the Party sets broad policy directions and reshuffles top leaders. As China’s slows, Beijing has made increasing efforts to stave off mass unemployment that may spark social unrest.

First Published: Mon, October 23 2017. 02:12 IST