Tue, Aug 25, 2009 - Page 2 News List

Fresh graduates lower expectations in search for jobs

By Shelley Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The number of fresh graduates this year willing to accept jobs that pay less than NT$20,000 a month has doubled compared with the same period last year, a recent survey by the Council of Labor Affairs showed.

The survey, conducted on the council’s online job bank Ejob Web site in June, sampled 13,503 fresh graduates. About 30 percent of respondents said they would accept a monthly pay of below NT$20,000, compared with about 15 percent in a poll made in the same month last year.

Youth Labor Union 95 executive member Liou You-shine (劉侑學) said that past surveys had never shown such lowered expectations. He panned the Ministry of Education’s plan to subsidize businesses that hire fresh graduates with NT$22,000 per month.

“When fresh graduates look for jobs, they are forced to lower their salary expectations to meet the demands of the job market,” he said.

Labor representatives have long criticized such subsidy plans, saying they lower working conditions on the job market, forcing job seekers to take on work that pay very little because they do not have better options.

Statistics released by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics showed that the jobless rate in June hit a high of 5.94 percent, with 647,000 people out of work. The figure rose to 6.07 percent last month.

In response, council officials said because most local firms depend on exports, it would be difficult for conditions to improve given the high unemployment rate in other countries.

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