November 2, 2018 / 11:28 AM / 16 days ago

China plans measures to promote jobs amid trade war with U.S.

FILE PHOTO - Job seekers attend a job fair at the Human Resources Development Bureau of Hainan province in Haikou, China September 8, 2018. Picture taken September 8, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer

BEIJING (Reuters) - China will take targeted steps to promote employment, state radio said on Friday, citing a regular cabinet meeting, as the economy slows amid a trade war with the United States.

In recent months, the government has taken steps to spur bank lending, cut taxes and boost infrastructure spending, in a bid to ward off a sharper slowdown in the economy.

“The current domestic and international situation is complicated and the employment pressure is still big,” the cabinet was quoted as saying.

The government will give priority to supporting small and private firms vital for job creation and will provide loan guarantees to startups, the cabinet said.

It will refund half of unemployment insurance premiums to some firms facing difficulties from Jan. 1, 2019, it added.

An existing policy of implementing a 1 percent ratio on unemployment insurance premiums is to be extended after the end of April next year, the cabinet said.

China will take more timely steps to support its economy, which faces increasing pressure, the politburo, a top decision-making body of the ruling Communist Party, said on Wednesday.

China is likely to see more job losses as the economy slows and firms feel more pains from higher U.S tariffs, analysts say.

Reporting by China Monitoring Desk and Kevin Yao; Editing by Nick Macfie and Clarence Fernandez

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