Singapore’s primary Chinese language newspaper Lianhe Zaobao recently reported that, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics of China, the unemployment rate among Chinese youth aged 16-24 rose to more than 20.4 percent in April, reaching a record high. The same number was 19.6 percent only one month ago. Chinese officials admitted frankly that structural problems in employment are still relatively prominent. The number of college graduates hit a new high this year, and the unemployment rate among young people remains high too. Stabilizing and expanding youth employment still “requires continued efforts.” Since 2020, the bottom of the youth unemployment rate curve has been rising. This also means that, excluding cyclical and structural factors, the overall youth unemployment rate has been consistently on the rise. A high unemployment rate just shows that there is a problem with the supply of jobs. The decline in job supply is essentially caused by economic growth that has not met expectations. In recent years, the number of college graduates has continued to rise. Coupled with the unemployed groups left over from the past few years, the number of college students seeking jobs will continue to increase in 2023. This “snowball” effect of employment pressure is obvious. At the same time, the mismatch of skills and preferences increases the difficulty of employment as well.
(1) Lianhe Zaobao, May 16, 2023
(2) Tencent News, May 16, 2023