Another thing that was mentioned to me was that the Chinese
government is keeping track of factories to make sure that they don't
run away in the middle of the night in order to maintain some social
stability. There is a deep concern that with so much unemployment and
so many workers that are owed back wages, workers may begin to lash
out. The government in some cases is now requiring factories to notify
them when before they want to close. It also seems that the government
has in some cases been paying the wages owed to the factory workers
when the factory owners disappear. You can see more on recent worker
In the image below from the Wall Street Journal article "China Fears Restive Migrants as Jobs Disappear in Cities"
posted on December 2, 2008, one can view the provinces where the
migrants workers are returning that had for the most part shifted to
Shenzhen on the southern coast.
interesting point expressed several times to me while in China had to
do with the toy manufacturing industry. The Pearl River Delta is
southern China is said to produce about 90% of all toys. Shockingly
there are estimates that as many as half of the 3,600 toy factories in
southern China have closed so far this year.
With all of this
economic unstability, ILRF has also noticed a roll back on some of the
laws passed in accordance with the New Labor Contract Law. ILRF is
following the situation of unemployment in China closely as it will
have major impact not just for Chinese workers, but for workers around