What’s the Deal With Local Subsidies

0414_WTDWThree decades of development have bestowed prosperity on the land of Dongguan. Across the nation of China the city and its people, even through recent economic woes, have been stereotyped as abundantly wealthy. Word of mouth has spread the idea that simply being a village resident leads to a share in the wealth. Privileges include subsidies to local graduates of up to RMB 800 per month for two years, simply because they have a job.

Colleges and vocational school graduates whose household registrations are originally in Dongguan and have worked in any private company registered in Dongguan for over a year, are qualified within the first three years after graduation to apply for the subsidies. Since 2006, the Human Resource Bureau funded up to RMB 4,000 to each qualified graduate graduating since 1999.

In 2011, new policies released and increased the fund to as high as RMB 19,200 per person. More than 36,000 locals have benefited since 2011. But not every graduate is able to get the funds. It applies only to locals graduating after 2008 and calls for a long application processes with six different levels of paperwork running through three different government departments.

Beyond encouraging locals to be enterprising, the government also supports establishments to use fresh talent by subsidizing the companies’ side of social insurance for one year. Employment agencies who successfully find jobs for Dongguan natives can receive RMB 200 for each recommendation. In addition to programs that sponsor locals joining skill training courses in industries like cosmetology and culinary arts, they are also qualified for a three-year, interest free mortgage issued by the Postal Savings Bank of China for up to RMB 100,000 for a first-time new business.

The major reason behind these subsidies is to improve the employment value of local graduates, because working in a private enterprise has become second-choice for many locals. Influenced by traditional parents who discourage their children from seeking opportunities outside of Dongguan, being a high-paid and stable public servant is the dream for many local graduates. Every year, tens of thousands of people attend the entrance exam for only a few hundred government openings.