onsdag 13. mai 2020

China’s local officials under pressure amid coronavirus pandemic to address rise in unemployment

The coronavirus pandemic has forced a dramatic change in priorities for Beijing’s leaders, as they grapple with falling economic growth and a rising unemployment rate that threatens social stability – the foundation of the ruling Communist Party’s legitimacy. University graduates, migrant workers and the country’s small business sector are the most at risk and China’s leadership has responded by making controlling unemployment a higher priority for the year ahead than getting the growth rate back on track.

At the same time, local officials have been told multiple times that they must also fulfil the country’s anti-poverty targets by the end of this year, putting further pressure on local cadres to deliver results. That message was reinforced by President Xi Jinping on Monday when he visited the homes of relocated farmers in Datong in the northern province of Shanxi.