Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Friday, February 06, 2009

Chinese unemployment

As a case study, students could compare the policy responses in the countries they are studying to unemployment like that reported in China.

China Puts Joblessness for Migrants at 20 Million

"The government offered a telling indicator... of the slowdown in China’s once-galloping economy, announcing that more than one in seven rural migrant workers had been laid off or was unable to find work, twice as many as estimated just five weeks ago.

"The new statistics followed a hint... by Prime Minister Wen Jiabao that the government might have to expand a recently announced $585 billion stimulus plan to deal “pre-emptively” with growing economic problems...

"In late December, employment officials estimated that at least 10 million migrant workers had lost their jobs in the third quarter of 2008 as waves of factories and businesses shut their doors.

"The specter of millions more unemployed clearly has the Chinese government worried. The government has not released annual figures on social unrest — what it terms 'mass incidents' — for several years, but foreign news reports suggest growing protests as unemployment spreads...

"In a joint report... the cabinet and the Communist Party’s Central Committee warned that 2009 would be “possibly the toughest year” for economic growth and rural development since the Asian economic bubble burst in the late 1990s, according to Xinhua..."


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