BEIJING, April 28 (Xinhuanet) -- This year, China
will make more efforts to protect migrant laborers' rights and clear the way for
them to work in urban areas, said an official with the Ministry of Labor and
Social Security Wednesday.
The government will remove all the barriers
blocking rural laborers from working in the urban areas this year, including
concerned regulations and systems, said Zheng Silin, the labor
minister, at the China Employment Forum that opened here Wednesday.
Statistics with the ministry show that, in the past
20 years, over 200 million rural laborers have moved from the countryside tothe
urban area. At present, the number of people employed in township enterprises
has reached 130 million and about 100 millionrural laborers were employed in
urban areas or developed regions.
However, China has 150 million more surplus rural
laborers and more of them need jobs in the non-agricultural sector with the
further adjustment of the agricultural structure, said Zheng.
The official said the Chinese government has paid
great attention to the employment of rural laborers and has taken it as an
important step to raise farmers' income and narrow the gap between rural and
In order to promote the flow of laborers from rural
areas to developed urban areas, the government has built an information network
and strengthened the service of job agencies to organize an orderly flow of
migrant workers across regions.
However, migrant workers still face many difficulties
when working in cities and their rights are often violated, which has become a
big barrier to the free labor flow.
The government should strengthen training of migrant
workers before they move to cities and more guidance should be provided tothem
in job hunting and rights protection, said Zheng.
The local governments where the migrant workers come
from should send special staff to provide more service and strengthen
administration of this group of people.
Central China's Hubei Province has set up a service
office in Beijing for migrant workers coming from the province.
Moreover, following last year's efforts, the
government will continue to help migrant workers get their defaulted payment
this year, said Zheng.
Up to now, about 28 billion yuan (3.38 billion US
dollars) of the 32 billion yuan (3.8 billion US dollars) of defaulted wages has
been paid to migrant workers, said the minister.
Zheng also said the government will reinforce law
enforcement this year and harshly punish any violations of migrant workers'