Pandemic and trade war: Chinese industry wages more than halved

In the manufacturing heart of the country wages went from 5 to 2 thousand yuan per month. The cut in production led to the reduction of overtime. Per capita income falls in the countryside. Government objectives at risk.

Guangdong (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Wages in Chinese industry have more than halved due to the pandemic crisis and the trade war with the United States, according to Hong Kong’s China Labor Bulletin.

In the Pearl River Delta area (Guangdong), the manufacturing heart of the country, the monthly earnings of industrial workers went from pre-pandemic 5,000 yuan to 2,000 today. The lack of orders from abroad has led to a cut in production and the consequent reduction in overtime, without which the working families do not earn enough for their daily subsistence.

In rural areas, where millions of now unemployed migrant workers come from, the situation is even more dramatic. According to data from the National Statistics Office, the per capita income in this part of China is 3218 yuan, 3% less than last year.

In April, the unemployment rate was 6%, with a marked increase in youth unemployment (13.8%). The Chinese economy is struggling to produce new jobs, and those who find employment are hired for short periods, without any social support.

With these numbers, several observers doubt that the Chinese government will achieve the goal of eliminating poverty in the country by the end of 2021, coinciding with the centenary of the birth of the Communist Party.