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Special> NPC & CPPCC Sessions 2009> Opinion
UPDATED: March 2, 2009
Employment Key to Solving Financial Crisis

Recent data has shown that the ongoing global financial crisis is forcing many economies into a downturn, characterized in particular by rising unemployment rates.

To deal with the situation, many governments have announced stimulus measures to promote employment.

For instance, the Philippines is offering aid for returned overseas workers to start their own businesses; Brazil has issued laws forbidding national enterprises and programs enjoying National Development Bank loans from firing employees; Canada has allocated 9 billion Canadian dollars (about 11 billion U.S. dollars) for a re-employment fund to encourage the unemployed to learn new skills.

If promoting employment in economically stable times may be said to help people fully utilize their skills, then protecting and promoting jobs in the current economic crisis is of great significance for global economic revival and social stability.

This is why the world's major economies, including China, have all laid emphasis on employment as an important part of the solution to the current crisis.

Having a job means having an income to survive on and spend. Falling employment rates amid the current recession are expected to lead to lower or no purchasing power at all among the jobless, which will in turn trigger a weakening of demand and consumption. The subsequent slowing of market sales will hurt production and investment among enterprises, finally resulting in a deeper economic recession.

Governments must therefore protect and promote employment, to make sure people have enough money to spend to spur economic recovery and break the vicious circle.

The purpose of economic development, after all, is to improve people's lives. Only when people are able to earn their livelihoods under stable conditions can society enjoy stability and sustainable development.

Thus it is not surprising that many governments have included employment protection and promotion measures in their respective economic stimulus packages, as they are expected to maximize the social effects of the stimulus and lay the foundation for long-term economic development.

However, the task does not lie only with the government. As an important part of the social economy, enterprises should also shoulder their own social responsibilities.

Some enterprises lay off workers in times of difficulty, hoping to survive the crisis by saving on labor costs. However, such actions are liable to worsen the overall social economic situation, finally leading to the firms' own downfall if the economy as a whole fails.

It is therefore wiser for enterprises to give up their short-term pursuit of larger benefits, and rather stand by their employees in the fight for survival and growth amid economic hardships.

(Xinhua News Agency February 20, 2009)

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