Monday, February 2, 2009

And the Reckoning Begins

Economic numbers came out today in China. Just like the rest of the world's, they are not pretty.

From Reuters:

BEIJING (Reuters) - About 20 million Chinese rural migrants have lost jobs as the nation's economic growth has faltered, a senior official said on Monday, promising policies to boost incomes and a softer approach to potential unrest.

Chen Xiwen, director of the Office of the Central Rural Work Leading Group, told a news conference that a recent survey showed 15.3 percent of the 130 million migrants moving from villages to cities and factories had returned jobless to the countryside.

Adding this year's 6 to 7 million new entrants into the rural labor market, Chen added, China will this year have about 25 million jobless and potentially restive rural unemployed.


Yiping Huang, chief Asia economist for Citigroup, said even that number could double if government stimulus plans fail to offset slowed exports and general gloom.

"It is a big number coming from an official source but a lot of people are expecting even bigger numbers," Huang said of Chen's estimate.

"These are pretty difficult to check reliably, but people are talking about 30 or 40 million eventually."

China has about 750 million people in its countryside -- more than the combined populations of the United States and European Union -- and their incomes and willingness to spend will be crucial to government efforts to boost domestic consumption.

Read the whole article


andy said...

Not only being in Xi'an, but I think if you have a job and didn't have a boat load of savings- you don't have a real feel for the financial crisis...there or here in 'Merica.

This bailout bill is really disconcerting to me, especially given the complete party lines being drawn on it...

Anonymous said...

Interesting discussions are popping up at the World Economic Forum in Davos; see here for video downloads: