China’s minister for human resources and social security has admitted the employment situation is grim, and that the top priority is to stabilize the job market, Reuters reported. Yin Weimin said the number of unemployed will likely rise next year. A total of 10.2 million people lost their jobs in the first 10 months of this year, 2% more than the government’s full-year projection. Fewer than half have found new jobs. Yin said small and medium-sized enterprises in particular were starting to feel the effects of the global financial problems. China’s official urban unemployment rate is about 4%, but could reach 4.5% by the end of the year, and rise further next year, Yin said. The closing of factories has, in some cases, led to protests by workers who did not receive their wages.