|Young people in rural areas are lured into factories hoping for good pay|
|Many migrant workers find it hard to move up in society|
He and other co-authors have written a paper and found that China does not have a very well educated workforce. From analyzing census data, Rozelle found far fewer migrant workers completed secondary education, contrary to Ministry of Education official figures.
|Development economist Scott Rozelle|
Wages are rising and low-wage manufacturing is moving out. China is already making plans to become an economy that will be based on higher value-added, high-wage industries. This will mean, of course, that there will be a high demand for skilled labour. International experience demonstrates that individuals will need to have to have acquired skills taught at the level of high school or above if they hope to be competitive in these higher value-added industries. If China fails to endow its labour force with such skills, not only will many individuals have a difficult time finding employment, the newly emerging industries may also falter from a short supply of skilled labour. The whole economy may experience slower development.
The authorities seem to purposely keep this segment of the population at the bottom rung of the ladder, thinking China always needs to have cheap labour. They close down schools for migrant children and because of hukou issues, they cannot go to the same schools as Beijing residents, thus creating an even greater social and economic divide.
So why not give migrant workers a chance? It's a win-win situation.