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Li calls for efforts to stabilize employment

Updated: Jul 14, 2022 By WANG KEJU CHINA DAILY Print
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Candidates look at employment opportunities at a job fair in Hefei, Anhui province, on May 17, 2022. [Photo/Xinhua]

Premier: Authorities will firmly prevent, redress all types of job discrimination

China will introduce stronger policy steps to keep payrolls stable and boost job creation in an effort to stabilize overall employment, according to a decision made at the State Council's Executive Meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang on Wednesday.

The meeting noted that the employment situation improved in June compared with April and May, but keeping employment stable remains a daunting task.

"The current employment situation has turned for the better, yet pressure remains significant and must not be underestimated. The government must continue to put employment front and center, and do everything possible to stabilize and increase employment. We must pay close attention to the employment of key groups, particularly college graduates and migrant workers," Li said.

The meeting called for continuing to ensure stable employment by supporting market entities. Policies to help enterprises overcome difficulties will be further implemented and bottlenecks in policy delivery will be removed.

Deferral of social insurance contributions by employers, refunding unemployment insurance premiums to enterprises that make no cuts or minimal cuts to payrolls, and job creation subsidies will be implemented on a one-stop basis.

Business startups will be supported in order to boost employment, the meeting decided. Guaranteed loans of up to 200,000 yuan ($29,700) will continue to be provided to eligible startups and self-employed households, with interest subsidies from fiscal funds. Local governments should earmark funds to help business incubation bases lower rental and other costs for startups.

Efforts related to the employment of key groups such as college graduates and migrant workers will be intensified, while policies to expand employment channels for graduates will be effectively implemented. Policies will be rolled out to support the hiring of graduates in service outsourcing industries.

Tailored employment services will be provided on an ongoing basis to graduates who are yet to find employment, and public works programs will be carried out effectively.

Workers' equal employment rights need to be safeguarded. Employment discrimination against people who previously tested positive for COVID-19 and have now recovered will be strictly prohibited. Local governments must fulfill their primary responsibilities and ensure that employment targets are met.

"We will firmly prevent and redress all types of employment discrimination. No violation of the employment rights of people with employability skills is allowed. Departments concerned need to intensify supervision of labor protection. Any discriminatory act will be seriously dealt with," Li said.

The meeting noted that over 200 million people in the country are now flexibly employed. Flexible employment helps to effectively boost job creation, and it is important to increase protection and services for the flexibly employed, said a statement issued after the meeting.

Flexibly employed workers will be allowed to join basic pension and medical insurance programs in localities where they work. Social insurance subsidies will be extended to college graduates and those having difficulty finding jobs when they engage in flexible employment.

Irregularities such as avoiding primary responsibilities in terms of labor rights and wage arrears will be resolutely dealt with, and trials of occupational injury insurance will be carried out.

Qualified flexibly employed people who take part in training programs will receive training subsidies and living allowances during these courses.

"While stabilizing existing jobs, we must pay close attention to flexible employment, which has broad prospects and can effectively boost job gains and help stabilize employment to a large extent," Li said.

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