China achieves outstanding employment performance during 13th Five-Year Plan period

A woman shows dried silkworm cocoons in Longzheng community, Hai’an, east China’s Jiangsu province, Oct. 4. Photo by Xiang Zhonglin, People’s Daily Online

Pursuing a more proactive employment policy during the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) period, China has maintained continuous stability of employment situation. From 2016 to 2019, over 13 million jobs were created each year.

Huang Xiaohui, 38, is a railway worker who cleans the rail tracks of a section along the Shanghai-Kunming railway. His wife is a co-worker of him. A few years ago, the couple left their hometown and started working on the rails across China to earn more money for their family. “We can make a total of over 10,000 yuan ($1,470) per month,” Huang told People’s Daily. Impacted by COVID-19 this year, the couple spent a little more time at home, but their passion for work never stops. Learning that a railway corporation was searching for workers, Huang immediately informed his fellow townsmen to register. “We feel assured to have a job,” he said.

According to China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, a total of 53.78 million jobs were created between 2016 and 2019. By the end of last year, the number of employed people in China stood at 770 million, including over 440 million in urban areas, up 9.5 percent from the end of 2015. The country’s unemployment rate has been kept below its goal of 5.5 percent.

During the 13th Five-Year Plan period, a batch of new professions emerged as China upgraded its economy, such as digital managers, virtual reality technicians, internet marketers, and online couriers.

Zhang Jian is one of the many who joined the new professions. As a farmer-turned drone pilot, he told People’s Daily that the job not only offers stable income, but also a technique that he likes. Zhang is a villager in Yingchengzi village, Badaling township of Beijing. He occasionally participated in a drone training organized by local human resources authority and became fascinated. Now, he works as a drone-flying demonstrator and tutor of a technology company.

The increasingly diversified employment forms are driving continuous optimization of China’s employment structure. As of the end of the last year, the employees in first, second and tertiary industries accounted for 25.1 percent, 27.5 percent and 47.4 percent, respectively. The service sector was showing increasing attractiveness.

In Qikang handiwork company based in Hefei, Anhui province, 68 physically disabled technicians were making handicrafts in a neat workshop. As an original equipment manufacturer, the company has not-so-high requirement on workers’ technological capability and labor intensity, so it’s a great job for the physically disabled. “I can make money here every day, and the living condition  is also great. I take the company as my home,” said Huang Qichuang, a man who works there.

Between 2016 and 2019, a total of 22.09 million unemployed personnel were reemployed in urban areas, and 7.06 residents having difficulty finding work were employed. Besides, 202,000 households which had no employed member now have at least one member employed each, and 12.13 million impoverished people had secured jobs under assistance.

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