China says it will use various policy tools to support jobs

BEIJING: China will strive to stabilize the economy and use various policy tools to support employment, state media said Wednesday quoting the cabinet.

China’s fiscal and monetary policy will prioritize employment, and various policy tools will be used to help avoid job losses, the cabinet said after a regular meeting.

“New downward pressure on China’s economy further increased in April due to the larger-than-expected impact of a new round of the pandemic and changes in the international situation,” the firm said. .

The economy took a hit as local authorities rushed to stop the spread of record COVID-19 cases, which led to full or partial lockdowns in dozens of Chinese cities, including a shutdown at city-wide in the commercial center of Shanghai.

The official unemployment rate hit 5.8% in March, a nearly two-year high.

China will waive interest payments on student loans due this year for college graduates this year and last year, the cabinet said.

Price stability, grain production and supply of goods will be ensured, he added.

An additional 50 billion yuan ($7.45 billion) of renewable energy subsidies will be allocated to power companies supported by the central government, the cabinet said.

China will also increase efficient investment by channeling more private funds into infrastructure projects through the issuance of real estate investment trusts (REITs), the firm said.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) said in a separate statement that it would launch a special business financing program as part of its unwavering support for the private economy.

The program is funded by state-owned China Securities Finance Corp and will support private companies with good prospects and competitive technology, the CSRC said.

(1 USD = 6.7135 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Kevin Yao and Beijing Newsroom; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Toby Chopra)

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