January 7, 2009

Journalists say unrest could rise in China

Three Chinese journalists warned social conflicts could arise from the global economic downturn and China's faltering expansion.

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 Xinhua's Chongqing news bureau said in an article printed in the state-run news agency's Outlook Weekly magazine, China Daily reported Wednesday.

The article was based on conversations with three journalists, China Daily said.

Once people's living conditions are challenged, more social conflicts will arise, Huo said.

Huo's comments stemmed in part from a survey that showed 80 percent of jobless migrant workers in Chongqing will likely remain in the city rather than return to their place of origin.

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

A December report by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security said 10 million Chinese migrants are unemployed.

The government ... should let the public know more about what it is doing to solve problems, and build trust ... among the people, said Shen Ronghua, a researcher in public administration at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.