Fears over massive unemployment have now turned into labor shortages as factory owners search for migrant workers who returned home after the financial crisis hit, Reuters reports:
Only a few months ago, such factories were laying off staff by the thousands and a mass reverse migration was taking place as millions of out-of-work workers streamed back to their villages in rural China to wait for the economy to pick up.
Now, with factories in China’s Pearl River Delta ratcheting up production to meet Christmas orders for everything from Barbie dolls to iPhones, Plasma TV’s and designer jeans, workers are in high demand in a region that produces around one third of China’s total exports.
Yet finding those workers is another thing entirely as many of the millions of migrant workers who returned home have stayed there, unwilling to make a rash return to the fickle job market in China’s “world factory,” as the Pearl River Delta is known.
“For every ten people we look for, we can only find two or three,” said Huang Zhilian, a manager at Vmart electronics, a firm that exports calculators, watches and DVD players to emerging markets such as Romania and Pakistan.