PIZZA Hut is set to open stores in Guangzhou later this year, and franchise-holder Jardine Pacific plans a chain of 20 shops on the mainland in the next few years. The company has an agreement with Pepsico, which owns the Pizza Hut name, to develop in Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan. Jardine Pacific China director Steven Piccus said yesterday that by the end of next year four shops should be open, three in Guangzhou and one in Shenzhen. A head office has been set up in Guangzhou, as a vehicle to explore business opportunities in the region. Mr Piccus said some smaller cities, such as Foshan in Guangdong province, could be chosen as sites for new restaurants. Although it was generally perceived that there was an abundant supply of manpower in China, Mr Piccus said competition for experienced staff from joint ventures was severe - and the shortage of staff with retailing and service experience was even more serious. A typical labour problem in joint ventures was that the Chinese partner was responsible for hiring labour, creating a barrier between foreign partners and locally engaged staff. Mr Piccus said Jardine Pacific would keep control of labour management within the joint venture. Another typical labour problem with joint ventures was that recruitment campaigns could result in a flood of applications from relatively inexpensive university graduates. However, being well educated did not guarantee productivity and manageability, he said. Another problem was that some applicants had a high self-opinion and are ambitious. They were not happy doing menial work and serving others. Jardine Pacific's solution is to hire staff whose experience and ambition match job requirements. ''Don't be tempted to hire educated staff just because they represent relatively good value,'' said Mr Piccus. While many joint ventures have tried to institute progressive management techniques and practices, the results were mixed.