"Employment gives our people their livelihood. Believe me: the government will not slacken off. It will work for this every minute of every day.”
The commitment was given by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during his report to the 16th National Congress of the All-China Federation of Trade Unions in October 2013.
"When we focus on GDP, we are actually focusing on employment,” Li added. “Every percentage point of GDP growth has created 1.3 million to 1.5 million job opportunities in the past few years.
"We need about 7.2% GDP growth if we are to ensure that 10 million job vacancies are created and registered unemployment held down at about 4% in cities and towns,” he continued. “We need stable growth in order to create employment.”
The Chinese government encourages people to obtain employment or start their own businesses. With this mind, it has put in a huge effort to sweep away or decentralize administrative processes. Entrepreneurship is not easy, but by smoothing the path and developing new business formats, the government can create more opportunities in that direction.
After years of effort, China is now the world's second largest economy. The fact that its export industry has become increasingly competitive has played an undeniable part in this. For that reason, export levels should also be kept stable: some 30 million people are employed directly in the export industry, and about 100 million in related support industries. A rapid drop in exports would cause problems in employment.
Li pointed out that the number of college graduates reached 6.99 million last year, a record high. In this complex economic environment, he explained, China has introduced the College Graduates’ Employment Promotion Plan in order to safeguard graduate employment.
Universities and human resources and social security departments should fully understand the employment status of college graduates, and provide training, employment guidance and opportunities. The government requires that there should be no “zero-employment families”.
"When I worked in northeast China, I visited families where nobody was employed. It was heartbreaking to see all the family members, including young men and women, unemployed and living with little hope. We must provide security for them,” Li said.