Active labour market policies in China - towards improved labour protection?

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-25
Journal / PublicationJournal of Asian Public Policy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013


This article offers a critical evaluation of the development of labour market policies in China. It argues that although active labour market policies (ALMPs) in China have been extended in response to the changing labour market and emerging labour conflicts, they have not replaced passive labour market policies (PLMPs). While the laid-off state-owned enterprise (SOE) workers' protests have compelled the government to introduce ALMPs targeting the SOE workers in the 1990s, protection of rural-to-urban migrant workers is minimal. In recent years, however, both ALMPs and PLMPs have been extended to migrant workers due to the recurrence of labour shortages. This, however, has led to new problems such as the massive exploitation of student interns. The impact of ALMPs on the migrant workers' rights is uncertain due to the patchy implementation and a lack of monitoring to policies enforcement. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Research Area(s)

  • active labour market policies, China, labour, social security, student interns, workfare