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'Grim times ahead' as China battles worsening crisis

[ 2009-01-07 14:25]     字号 [] [] []  
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China is about to enter a peak time for mass incidents, as the global financial crisis takes a firmer grip on the economy and society, some senior media observers said yesterday.

The government must prevent social unrest in these times of economic difficulties so it can maintain steady growth and high employment, a report printed in the Xinhua News Agency's Outlook Weekly magazine said.

The report was based on interviews with three Xinhua journalists from Chongqing, Jiangsu and Guangdong on their perspectives of social stability this year.

"The global financial crisis is taking a big toll in China and more people will lose their jobs this year," Huang Huo, director of the news department at Xinhua's Chongqing bureau, said.

"Once people's living conditions are challenged, more social conflicts will arise, especially among migrant workers and fresh graduates," he said.

A survey conducted in Chongqing showed that 80 percent of jobless migrant workers will stay in the city rather than go back to the countryside, Huang said, without naming the report.

"If a lot of migrant workers remain jobless for over six months, many social problems may arise," he said.

"Graduates and their parents will get frustrated and depressed because of the slackening job market and they are another possible threat to social stability," he said.

A recent public security report published by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) said that since September, the number of minor criminal cases in the Yangtze and Pearl river deltas was up 10 percent on the same period of 2007.

The first half of this year will see more social unrest triggered by the financial crisis, it said.

The global financial crisis has caused the closure of 670,000 small- and medium-sized firms in China, many of them labor-intensive ones based in coastal regions, it said.

According to a survey published last month by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, more than 10 million migrants are out of work.

"The key to keeping social stability is building up a sound social security system," Li Wei, a CASS researcher on social development, told China Daily yesterday.

Also, smooth communication between the public and the government is very important, Shen Ronghua, a researcher in public administration, said.

"Since October, the government has done a lot to cope with the financial crisis but it should let the public know more about what it is doing to solve problems, and build trust and understanding among the people," he said.

The government has stepped up efforts to create jobs and prevent the economy from slowing down too much, he said.

China's leaders including President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao have called on officials to maintain social stability and help cope with the financial crisis, he said.


1. What was the name of the magazine that published the report?

2. Which cities were the 3 journalists from?

3. According to Li Wei, the CASS researcher, the key to keeping social stability is what?


1. Xinhua News Agency's Outlook Weekly Magazine.

2. Chongqing, Jiangsu and Guangdong.

3. Building up a sound social security system.

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

'Grim times ahead' as China battles worsening crisis

'Grim times ahead' as China battles worsening crisisBrendan joined The China Daily in 2007 as a language polisher in the Language Tips Department, where he writes a regular column for Chinese English Language learners, reads audio news for listeners and anchors the weekly video news in addition to assisting with on location stories. Elsewhere he writes Op’Ed pieces with a China focus that feature in the Daily’s Website opinion section.

He received his B.A. and Post Grad Dip from Curtin University in 1997 and his Masters in Community Development and Management from Charles Darwin University in 2003. He has taught in Japan, England, Australia and most recently China. His articles have featured in the Bangkok Post, The Taipei Times, The Asia News Network and in-flight magazines.