China to take further steps for job growth and employment stability
Updated: July 14, 2022 00:20 Xinhua

BEIJING — China will introduce stronger policy steps to keep payrolls stable and boost job creation in an effort to stabilize overall employment, according to the decision made at the State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang on July 13.

The meeting noted employment as a top priority in ensuring people's livelihood and an important underpinning for keeping overall economic performance stable. Jobs are vital for creating wealth and increasing income, which in turn will spur consumer demand and drive economic growth.

Since the beginning of this year, subnational governments and competent departments across the country have stepped up efforts to implement various policies for job security. In June, the employment situation turned for the better compared to April and May.

That said, keeping employment stable still remains a daunting task. It is important to continue to put employment first, boost employment through development, and underpin a faster recovery and steady growth of the economy through stable employment.

"The current employment situation has turned for the better, yet pressure remains significant and must not be underestimated. The government must continue to put employment front and center, and do everything possible to stabilize and increase jobs. We must pay close attention to the employment of key groups, particularly college graduates and migrant workers," Premier Li said.

The meeting required continuing to ensure stable employment by supporting market entities. Policies to help enterprises overcome difficulties will be further implemented, and bottlenecks in policy delivery removed.

Deferral of social insurance contributions by employers, refunding unemployment insurance premiums for enterprises that make no cuts or minimal cuts to staff number and job creation subsidies will be executed on a one-stop basis.

Market-oriented job creation by the nonpublic sector will be scaled up. Business startups will be supported to catalyze employment. Up to 200,000 yuan of guaranteed loans will continue to be provided to eligible startups and self-employed households, with interest subsidy from fiscal funds. Local governments should earmark funds to help incubation bases lower rentals and other costs for business startups.

Efforts relating to the employment of such key groups as college graduates and migrant workers will be intensified. Policies to expand employment channels for graduates will be effectively implemented. Resumption of in-person recruitment will be expedited. Policies will be rolled out to support service outsourcing industries to hire graduates.

Tailored employment services will be provided on an ongoing basis to graduates who are yet to land jobs. Public works programs will be carried out effectively. Efforts will be made to ensure at least one member of zero-employment families can get a job as quickly as possible.

Workers' equal employment rights need to be safeguarded. Employment discrimination against people who used to test positive for COVID-19 and have now recovered will be strictly prohibited.

Local governments must fulfill their primary responsibility and see that employment targets are met. The work of localities in this regard will be put under supervision and related information circulated in a timely manner.

"We will firmly prevent and redress all types of employment discrimination. No violation of the employment rights of people with employability skills is allowed. Departments concerned need to intensify supervision on labor protection. Any discriminatory act will be seriously dealt with," Premier Li said.

The meeting noted that over 200 million people in the country are now flexibly employed. Flexible employment helps to effectively boost job creation and unleash market vitality and social creativity. It is important to increase protection and services for the flexibly employed.

The flexibly employed will be allowed to enroll in basic pension and medical insurance schemes in places where they work. They may register for these schemes on the unified national platform, and the payment of social insurance premiums, portability of schemes and settling medical bills inter-provincially will be made easier.

Social insurance subsidies will be extended to college graduates and those having difficulty finding jobs when they engage in flexible employment.

Lawful rights and interests of the flexibly employed will be protected in accordance with the law. Irregularities such as avoiding the primary responsibilities of protecting labor rights and wage arrears will be resolutely dealt with. Trials of occupational injury insurance will be carried out.

Casual labor markets will be developed at a faster pace. Public employment services agencies will be encouraged to provide free services to match supply with demand for casual labor. Qualified flexibly employed people who take part in training programs will receive training subsidies and living allowances during the course.

"While stabilizing existing jobs, we must pay close attention to flexible employment, which holds broad prospects, and can effectively boost job gains and help stabilize current employment to a large extent," Premier Li said.

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