In the third week after the lunar new year in late January, job openings for university graduates in China plummeted 44% compared with the same period last year, according to Zhipin.com, a recruitment website, reported the Financial Times.
Zhipin said the year-over-year decline in sectors such as advertising reached nearly 72%, and for the healthcare sector, where the slowdown is the most modest, the number of job openings this year was still 8.8% below the level during the same period last year.
The weak demand comes at a time when the number of Chinese graduates is poised to hit a record high. By the end of the summer, as many as 8.74 million college graduates are expected to enter the job market. While it is too early to know how many of them will actually land a job, Beijing has expressed concern.
“The coronavirus has resulted in a plunge in job demand,” You Jun, deputy director at the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, told reporters at a recent news conference in Beijing, as off-site recruitment has been largely suspended.