Lured by rising wages, migrant workers flood Beijing

14:22, February 23, 2011      

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Seeking potential opportunities for personal development, 2.8 million rural migrant workers from all parts of China are now swarming into Beijing. This means China's capital city, which has been noted for its improving economic situation, is not expected to suffer from a labor shortage.

Labor shortage, or the manpower shortage, refers to the labor dilemma currently occurring in China. Masses of migrant workers are flocking to the coastal cities in eastern China. Despite this, employers were still unable to recruit sufficient workers.

The global recession and the traditional treatment of the peasant workers were believed to be blamed for this unique phenomenon.

In 2011, the job situation in Beijing has been more optimistic since post-Spring Festival due to the 10 percent increase in migrant workers’ wages, according to the Beijing Job Center.

300,000 aimless job hunters

Of the 2.8 million migrant works that flooded into Beijing, 300,000 are aimlessly job hunting. This group numbers 30,000 to 40,000 more than in previous years although the overall migrant population has remained the same, said Liu Xiaojun, chief of Beijing Job Center, citing this year's inspection data.

10 percent salary rise

Yesterday, Beijing's Human Resource and Social Security Bureau authorized the city's public career service centers to release 56,000 positions.

About 37,000 of the positions require just basic skills and are livelihood-related, such as housekeeping services.

Apparently the 10 percent salary increase is attracting more migrant workers in Beijing, Liu indicated, which is part of the general domestic increase of the minimum wage.

Some job vacancies still exist

Liu also added that recruiting difficulties could still exist in some positions, such as those in the service industry because of the low salary and terrible working environment. Liu said Beijing used to receive a surplus of laborers from other provinces like Chongqing, but the dynamics have changed.

"[Chongqing] offers more updated positions than before, so their peasants would not bother traveling far outside their hometowns to survive," Liu said. "Although it was previously a province with a labor force that tended to flow outward, it has changed."

And the migrant workers are not actually concerned about the mandatory social security and the labor rights protection, which are the advantages Beijing possesses.

By Li Yancheng, People's Daily Online


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