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Labour Market Aspects of State Enterprise Reform in China


  • Fan Gang
  • Maria Rosa Lunati
  • David O’Connor


In recent years, as China’s reform of state–owned enterprises (SOEs) has gathered momentum, the number of workers made redundant has been rising. Until now, the dismissals have affected only a fraction of the “surplus labour”, which has been estimated at 20–25 per cent of total industrial employment in SOEs. If concerns for social stability have so far dictated a gradual approach to SOE restructuring, the heavy fiscal and financial burden of loss–making SOEs has forced an acceleration of the process. Thus, far more sizeable layoffs from state enterprises could be expected in coming years.The growth of the non–state sector has opened new job opportunities for some SOE laid–off workers. By easing the re–employment of redundant workers, a further development of the non–state sector is an important condition for a smooth restructuring of the state sector. Measures to promote further development of the non–state sector include removing remaining discrimination against the private ... A mesure que la réforme des entreprises publiques s’est accélérée en Chine au cours des dernières années, une part croissante de la main–d’œuvre s’est trouvée « superflue ». Les licenciements n’ont concerné jusqu’à présent qu’une faible part des travailleurs excédentaires — qui pourraient représenter 20 à 25 pour cent de l’emploi industriel total dans les entreprises du secteur public. Ce choix d’une approche progressive de la restructuration a été justifié par des préoccupations de stabilité sociale. Mais le poids de la charge budgétaire et financière des entreprises publiques déficitaires est tel que le processus s’est accéléré. Il faut sans doute s’attendre à l’avenir à des licenciements de bien plus grande envergure.Le développement du secteur non étatique s’est traduit par l’apparition de nouvelles opportunités d’emploi pour certains travailleurs licenciés du public. Une telle croissance du secteur non étatique est l’une des principales conditions d’une restructuration en ...

Suggested Citation

  • Fan Gang & Maria Rosa Lunati & David O’Connor, 1998. "Labour Market Aspects of State Enterprise Reform in China," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 141, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:devaaa:141-en

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    Cited by:

    1. Irena Grosfeld & Claudia Senik-Leygonie & Thierry Verdier & Stanislav Kolenikov & Elena Paltseva, 1999. "Dynamism and Inertia on the Russian Labour Market: A Model of Segmentation," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 246, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Chamon, Marcos & Liu, Kai & Prasad, Eswar, 2013. "Income uncertainty and household savings in China," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 164-177.
    3. Guang, Y., 1999. "Facing unemployment : urban layoffs and the way out in post-reform China (1993-1999) : an empirical and theoretical analysis," ISS Working Papers - General Series 19053, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
    4. Grosfeld, Irena & Senik-Leygonie, Claudia & Verdier, Thierry & Kolenikov, Stanislav & Paltseva, Elena, 2001. "Workers' Heterogeneity and Risk Aversion: A Segmentation Model of the Russian Labor Market," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 230-256, June.
    5. Xiaolan Fu & V.N.Balasubramanyam, 2004. "Exports, FDI, Growth Of Small Rural Enterprises And Employment In China," Working Papers wp286, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
    6. Sai Ding & Xiao-yuan Dong & Shi Li, 2009. "Women's Employment and Family Income Inequality during China's Economic Transition," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(3), pages 163-190.

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