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In China and India,it Pays to be a Skilled Blue Collar Worker than a While Collar one

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Increasing College Education in Developing Countries has led to Unemployement and Low Wages for White Collar Workers.The increasing number of people armed with College Degrees has led to a Perverse Situation where entry level White Collar workers are faced with abysmal wages that is if they get employment at all.There are hundreds of anecdotes where recent college graduates find themselves with such low salaries that they have to depend on their parents for living expenses.

College Graduates Get Pathetic Salaries

India and China both are somewhat in the same boat.Anybody with a college degree in these countries will tell you about the hardships faced after graduation.There is huge competition for campus jobs which offer pitiful salaries.In India world renowned companies like Infosys,Wipro are known to offer salaries as low as $400/month for graduates.The other companies offer even lower wages as Supply far Exceeds Demand.The rest of the graduates are  forced to work in apprenticeships or other low paying professions.After getting a job,the workers are forced to stuff themselves 4-5 in a small apartment as Real Estate Prices have approached First World Levels in Indian and Chinese cities.So with a 3rd World Salary,you are first to pay  First World Expenses.The main reason for this pathetic situation is the Deluge of Educated Workers without the Requisite Amount of Jobs.

A Dearth of Work for China’s College Grads – Businessweek

The job hunt came as a shock. The 23-year-old job seeker graduated in June from a good school—Beijing University of Technology—with a bachelor’s degree in materials science, a subject he figured would appeal to employers. Yet he had to go through scores of interviews and comb the online job sites endlessly before landing a job at a local trading company. Happy ending? Barely. The pay, $368 a month, is meager by Beijing standards, so he has had to move back in with his parents and he’s too ashamed about the outcome of his job search to give his name. As the young man explains, there are too many recent grads looking for jobs, while companies want only the most qualified people at the lowest price.

At least he got a job—many of his peers are still looking. Even as labor shortages plague manufacturing industries, more than one-quarter of this year’s 6.3 million Chinese college graduates are unemployed, according to the Education Ministry.

Skilled Blue Collar Workers Finding Themselves in Great Demand

While White Collar Workers find themselves in a tough situation,Skilled Blue Collar Workers are hard to Find.China has already seen strikes over higher wages which companies have surrendered to.In India also,Factory workers and Skilled Technicians are seeing sharply higher wages.In India,shortage of Plumbers,Carpenters and Electricians are forcing up their wages.Specific Skills are in Short Supply,leading to much better living conditions despite low or no eduction.Specialized Blue Collar Skills like Rig Operators command salaries which match that of High Level Executives.

Sweet Spot for China’s Blue-Collar Revolution – Caixin

A recent spate of worker strikes at factories in China partly reflects a search for a new balance at the labor end of the manufacturing landscape, especially among young, blue-collar workers. On top of that, export manufacturers have been talking about labor shortages for the past year or two. But “labor shortage” is an oxymoron: Any product in shortage is simply not priced right.

These conditions point to a need for adjusting the price of labor in China. Western buyers should take note. Although individual factories may lack pricing power, China has national pricing power. Every factory in a given sector has a uniform wage level. And China is the factory of the world.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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