Aerial photo taken on the early morning of April 1, 2022 shows areas west of the Huangpu River in east China's Shanghai. (Photo by Yang Fan/Xinhua)
Chinese cities are making a slew of new efforts to attract talent to settle in, which include favorable measures such as elimination of residential registration requirements, rental waivers and even subsidies for starting businesses and home purchases.
Earlier this month, the metropolis of Shanghai announced that returnees who graduated from the world's top 50 universities can be directly registered as local residents after becoming full-time employees in the city, with requirements for their social security payment base and payment time abolished.
It was one of the measures listed in a notice stressing special support for talent issued by Shanghai Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau to help resume work and production.
Residential or household registration, called "Hukou" in Chinese, has always been a key allure for talent as it leads to opportunities and benefits upon permanent residency in a city.
According to the notice, those who graduated from universities ranked between 51 and 100 globally can apply for "Hukou" after working in Shanghai full-time and paying social security for six months, a much shorter period than before.
Last week, the megacity also announced a series of favorable policies including eased restrictions on household registration in its new suburban areas for fresh graduates from both Shanghai and other cities while extending the application period.
In 2022, Shanghai will add 25,000 new rental housing units for talent, and provide a batch of affordable, long-term, and stable rental housing for fresh graduates working in the city, according to the policies.
Meanwhile, for faster resumption of work and production, the city has also opened up a "green channel," giving priority to the application for the introduction of talent from key enterprises as well as those who studied abroad in renowned universities.
As Shanghai is opening its doors to talents, other Chinese cities are also racing to win over top professionals.
The high-tech hub Shenzhen has raised its subsidy for doctoral degree holders, 35 years old at most, to 100,000 yuan (about 14,942 U.S. dollars) per person upon settlement in the city. The previous figure was 30,000 yuan.
The latest data from a research unit under Liepin, a job-hunting website, shows that industries including intelligent manufacturing, integrated circuits, artificial intelligence and biomedicine are short on talent.
While Tianjin has introduced detailed incentives for urgently needed talent in emerging industries such as new materials and high-end equipment manufacturing, Chengdu is welcoming top athletes and referees nationwide to make the southwestern city their home.
In 2022, China aims to create over 11 million new urban jobs and keep a surveyed urban unemployment rate of no more than 5.5 percent.
"Changes in the country's industrial structure have led to shifts in the employment structure," said Xing Zhenkai, deputy head of the research unit under Liepin.
Amid shifts in China's innovation-driven growth and industrial upgrading, the competition among cities for talent, especially high-quality ones, has become inevitable, analysts said. -