Record 1 million apply for civil service positions
A record 1 million applications have been received for civil service vacancies. The figure is 200,000 more than last year, the Mirror reports. Dai Laxin, an expert at the civil servant training website offcn.com, said the financial crisis was prompting some workers in foreign companies to seek more stable positions and the civil service was seen as the best alternative. The required qualifications for this year's civil service vacancies are also lower than previously. The average ratio for each position to the number of candidates is 1:78, with the Disabled Persons' Federation offering one position for every 4,723 applicants.
Websites are suffering the effects of global financial meltdown
The impact of the financial crisis on mainland information technology (IT) companies is showing, with first casualty 99.cn closing down after the withdrawal of venture capital. The music website was founded in January by an American Chinese for 30 million yuan (HK$34.2 million). Blog-hosting website bokee.com, founded by Fang Dongsheng, is expected to offer employees voluntary redundancy while those who choose to stay will receive no wages, the Beijing Evening News reports. The four types of website most at risk are those related to video hosting, social networking, life searches and gaming, according to a study by internet investment website wabei.com.
Central government to shore up companies that are struggling
A top official said the global financial crisis, 'triggered by the US subprime mortgage debacle, has affected the employment situation in China, particularly many export-oriented enterprises'. Yin Chengji, a spokesman at the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, said that in order to bail out businesses in difficulty, credit and loans would be increased and more tariff refunds provided for exports. The central government will also support labour-intensive enterprises, small and medium-sized businesses, private companies and the service sector to maintain a stable unemployment rate.
Post-Olympic boom time for travel consultants
Travel consultancy has become more popular in the post-Olympic period, the Beijing Youth Daily reports. A travel consultant deals with specific demands and related services for individuals and groups. The service covers many areas such as hotel management, market promotion for scenic spots and the design of travel routes. Some even supply personal health services and defend tourist rights. A junior consultant can expect 24,000 yuan a year and a senior consultant 300,000 yuan.
Steel producers to cut salaries and layoff employees
With the price of steel falling, leading players in the industry are cutting pay and laying off staff. Wuhan Iron and Steel Corporation will reduce employees' salaries by 20 per cent for ordinary workers and by up to 50 per cent for management, the Guangzhou Daily reports. Steel giant Baosteel Group will also impose salary reductions soon. Ma Zhongpu, an expert at chinaccm.com, described the slide in steel prices as 'unprecedented' and said salary cuts and layoffs were the only way for steel enterprises to survive the economic environment.