China targets to create 13 million jobs this year
Premier Li Keqiang added that if these measures work, “we are prepared to step it up”.
This comes as the country is facing challenges on multiple fronts, including a shrinking and ageing workforce, a crackdown on debt Beijing worries is dangerously high, the pandemic, weak global export demand and high energy costs as oil prices spike with the ongoing war in Ukraine.
“China aims to create 11 million – or preferably 13 million – urban jobs in 2022,” Li said at a nationally televised news conference after the closing of the annual meeting of China’s ceremonial legislature.
He said the total number of job seekers this year is expected to be 16.6 million, including a record 10.6 million university graduates.
In addition, the government needs to create jobs for the almost 300 million rural migrant workers in cities, he said. China created 12.7 million jobs last year, up from 2021′s 11.9 million, according to earlier government data.
Analysts said the ruling Communist Party is likely to struggle to meet its official target of 5.5% annual economic growth, the lowest since the 1990s and a sharp contraction from last year’s 8.1% expansion.
However, the premier expressed confidence that official economic targets can be met, but said the country is grappling with debt, global warming and a gulf between its elite and the poor majority, according to the News Tribune.