Tuesday, April 19, 2005

China labor market

So, I guess this means that a middle manager for a foreign company in Beijing or Shanghai makes 20-30 times what the average rural worker does? And I thought the US had a problem with income inequality...

Economist: CAN China—population 1.3 billion—really be running short of people? In many of the most important parts of its booming economy, the answer, increasingly, is yes. Though China has a vast pool of unskilled labour, firms in the south now complain that they cannot recruit enough cheap factory and manual workers. The market is even tighter for skilled labour. As the economy grows and moves into higher value-added work, the challenge of attracting and retaining staff is rising with the skill level, as demand outstrips supply...

Pay and benefits are soaring. A Chinese middle manager at a foreign company in Beijing or Shanghai can now command total annual cash compensation (salary plus bonus) of $27,000-$32,000, says Hewitt. Senior managers receive between $46,000 and $54,000 and top executives can expect $80,000 to $90,000 or more. While underlying inflation in China is around 2%, average annual salary increases for mid-level and senior managers are now 6-10%. Lai Kam-tong at the Hong Kong Institute of Human Resource Management says that accountants' salaries are rising by 14% a year. J├╝rgen Viethen, general manager for F&G China Electric, a small Spanish-owned electrical switchgear-maker, is offering key employees raises of up to 50%—and still losing them.

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