China to beef up efforts to bolster 2023 employment as number of graduates hits new record of 11.58 million
Published: Jan 10, 2023 09:52 AM Updated: Jan 10, 2023 09:47 AM

Two college graduates read a job description at a recruitment fair held in Taiyuan, North China’s Shanxi Province on February 8, 2022. Photo:cnsphoto

Two college graduates read a job description at a recruitment fair held in Taiyuan, North China’s Shanxi Province on February 8, 2022. Photo:cnsphoto

The authorities will focus on lifting employment for graduates or assisting with starting their own businesses in 2023, as a record high of 11.58 million graduates streaming out of colleges to enter the workforce this year in China, a senior official said in a newly released interview.

Policy that helps graduates find jobs will be “a top priority” in 2023, Minister of Human Resources and Social Security Wang Xiaoping told Xinhua News Agency in an interview published on Monday.

Among a host of measures to address the challenge, the country will provide subsidies to encourage enterprises to create jobs, Wang said. Efforts will also be made to stabilize recruitment in the public sector, enhance services and training, and offer personalized assistance for graduates who have difficulty finding jobs, she said. 

Overall, China’s employment situation will remain stable in 2023 as the economy continues to recover with optimized anti-COVID-19 response and pro-growth policies, the minister said, pledging to “go all out to maintain overall stability in employment.”

Despite a mix of internal and external challenges such as economic slowdown, COVID-19 flare-ups, and a complex and fluid external environment, China maintained employment stability in 2022, with 12.06 million jobs newly created in urban regions, exceeding the annual target of 11 million ahead of schedule, Wang said. Employment of college graduates was stable overall, and more people who had been lifted out of poverty were employed compared with 2021, she said.

The country has taken effective policies to support economic growth, help businesses, promote entrepreneurship, assist key groups including migrant workers, while also strengthening training programs and services for job seekers.

The tone-setting annual Central Economic Work Conference held in December 2022 stressed to put promoting the employment of young people, especially college graduates, in a more prominent position, and strive to mitigate the impacts of structural price rises on some of those in difficulty in a timely and effective manner.

The employment-first policy will be strengthened, with efforts on the fiscal and monetary fronts to shore up employment, Wang said.

More support will be given to the service sector, micro and small enterprises, and self-employed individuals, which have a large capacity for employment, Xinhua reported. In addition, measures will be intensified to encourage business startups and help those who have gotten rid of poverty, while large-scale training programs will be carried out for key groups and industries, according to the report.