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Economic transformation creates opportunities for college grads

Updated: Jun 7,2016 11:41 AM     english.gov.cn/Economic Daily

On April 25, Premier Li Keqiang visits the employment guidance center of Sichuan University in Chengdu city of Sichuan province. [Photo/China News Service]

The employment of college graduates has always been a focus of attention. This year is no exception, as the number of college graduates hit a record high of 7.65 million.

So how is the college graduate employment rate in the world’s second largest economy?

According to contract signing rates from educational authorities, a key indicator of employment performance, as of May 1, the figure is slightly higher than the same period last year, showing a stable job market.

Employment of college graduates is stable so far, but not without pressures.

On the one hand, this year saw the largest number of college graduates who stepped out of the ivory tower and into the job market. On the other hand, traditional industries such as coal and steel are cutting job opportunities amid reforms to reduce overcapacity. All this adds pressure to the job market.

Under such pressures, the future of the job market for college graduates remains bright as the nation’s economy is growing at a medium-to-high rate and transforming its economic structure.

Initiatives such as Made in China 2025 and Internet Plus, improvements in modern manufacturing and service industries, and upgrades in traditional industries all together create huge job opportunities, according to Zheng Dongliang, an official from the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security.

Emerging industries such as information technology and e-commerce, and new economies featuring new platforms and sharing are growing rapidly, forging new diversified employment resources for college graduates, said Chen Yun, another official from the ministry.

During the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015) period, one million college graduates set up their own businesses, and most of them were in the new economy sectors.

What’s more, with the development of the regional economy and improvements in information and transport infrastructure, middle-and-small-sized cities, as well as China’s central and western regions, will become popular places to attract college graduates. The southwest Guizhou province is such an example, thanks to the development of high technologies such as big data.

Thus, considering the momentum of economic transformation and development of the new economies, employment of college graduates will remain stable in the future, Chen said.

In addition, policies and service systems concerning college graduates’ employment and entrepreneurship should be further improved, providing guidance for their career development and entrepreneurship service, and encouraging them to work in China’s central and western regions and in micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, Chen added.

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