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China Supporting Job Seekers

The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security announces that the country is working to make its traditional industries smarter and more eco-friendly to help create jobs.

By Maggie Mancini

With its industrial upgrade creating new opportunities and strengthening policy support to boost employment, China is beefing up efforts from both the supply and demand sides to help young people secure jobs. China is expected to see over 11.7 million college graduates in 2024, and the number of job-seekers has continued to grow, according to the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security.  

“China’s current employment situation is on the mend as the economy picks up momentum,” says Mo Rong, president of the Chinese Academy of Labour and Social Security. “Despite challenges, positive factors such as economic growth and policy support continue to bolster the job market.”  

China’s progress in technological innovation and industrial upgrading is catalyzing a boom in job opportunities, and an increasing number of young people are eyeing opportunities in high-tech and emerging industries such as artificial intelligence, big data, and smart manufacturing. 

In a manufacturing company in southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality, hundreds of new jobs such as supply chain manager and precision mold designer sprung up after the company’s pivot to smart manufacturing. The company now needs talent with higher education and skills, according to its manager. 

“Industrial upgrading is reshaping the talent structure of enterprises, and college graduates can adapt to these changes more easily as they are well-acquainted with the internet and more versatile,” says Li Qiang, executive vice president of, a human resources platform. 

With developing new quality productive forces high on this year’s agenda, China is doubling down on its efforts to make traditional industries more sophisticated, smarter and more eco-friendly, fostering emerging and future-oriented industries, and opening new fields such as quantum technology and life sciences. 

According to Wang Xiaoping, minister of MHRSS, the country will beef up support for major employment drivers such as private, small and medium-sized companies, and boost the development of digital, elderly care, and green sectors to play a greater role in creating jobs. 

“Many new jobs and occupations will emerge, providing young people with fresh career choices and new space for development,” says Wang Jinsong, dean of the Graduate School of Tianjin University of Technology. 

As China transitions from traditional to new growth drivers, there’s a burgeoning demand for talent. However, there’s also a noticeable gap between the requirements of enterprises and the knowledge structure and technical skills of job applicants. 

To better help young job-seekers adapt to market demand, this year’s government work report has underlined improving the quality of education and vocational training. 

Wu De, president of Sichuan Agricultural University, says that the university has been canceling or optimizing majors with low employment rates since 2020 and placing greater emphasis on practical training. 

“Our students are now more adaptive and have a wider range of career choices, with the proportion of graduates pursuing higher education, getting employed or starting businesses jumping from 87.2 percent in 2020 to 90.5 percent in 2023,” Wu says. 

To meet the surging market demand for skilled professionals, China provided government-subsidized vocational training to 18 million people in 2023, with a special focus on key sectors such as advanced manufacturing and modern services, according to the MHRSS. 

The country has set aside 66.7 billion yuan (about 9.39 billion U.S. dollars) for employment subsidies this year, with a particular focus on the employment and entrepreneurship of college graduates, rural migrant workers, and other key populations. 

The country has vowed to continue to strengthen measures to promote youth employment, expand market-oriented channels, and provide better guidance for employment and entrepreneurship. 

Tags: APAC April 2024, APAC News

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