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Rising unemployment

2012-09-11 17:34     Web Editor: Wang Fan comment


China has shown little evidence of rising unemployment despite the slowest growth rate since the global financial crisis - and is nowhere near the jobless rates seen in some of the countries hardest hit by the euro-zone debt crisis. But slowing growth underscores a fundamental challenge to China's economic development: the underemployment of huge numbers of graduates that Chinese colleges are churning out.


Many graduates find they can get only low-skill jobs that pay far less than they imagined they would make and see a future of limited prospects. A survey of more than 6,000 new graduates conducted last year by Tsinghua University in Beijing said that entry-level salaries of 69% of college graduates are lower than those of migrant workers who come from the countryside to Chinese factories, a figure government statistics currently put at about 2,200 Yuan ($345) a month. Graduates from lower-level universities make an average of only 1,903 Yuan a month, it said.


'My classmates and I want to find jobs in banks or foreign-trade companies, but the reality is that we can't find positions that match our education,' said Ms. Wu, who graduated in June from Zhejiang University of Finance and Economics. She has spent the time since then living at home and trawling recruitment websites. 'I just want a stable, maybe administrative, job,' she said, 'but why is it so hard?'


Experts say that many of the graduates lack skills such as critical thinking, foreign languages and basic office communications that businesses are looking for. At the same time, China has made only limited gains in remaking its economy so it relies more on services and innovation and less on construction and assembly-line manufacturing. That limits the markets for the lawyers, engineers and accountants that Chinese universities are producing. 'The underemployment is more a short-term problem,' says Albert Park, professor of Economics at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. 'The demand will be there for China's graduates.'


鲜有(xiǎn yǒu)rarely have


甚感(shèn gǎn)feel very much


起薪(qǐxīn)beginnig salary; entry-level salary


职场(zhíchǎng)office; job market


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