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Optimism as first round of job fairs attracts more companies

THE first round of job fairs since the Spring Festival took place in Shanghai over the weekend, and organizers said more companies than they expected were hiring.

Crowds of applicants flooded to six downtown job fairs. Figures showed about 50,000 people were out looking for work on Saturday.

More than 900 companies took part in a job fair in Shanghai Stadium, 30 percent fewer than the same time last year, but still above the organizer's expectations.

"We thought 600 or 700 companies would show up," said Liu Peisen, general manager of the Shanghai International Multi-search Co. "About 200 more companies attended the fair. It may mean some companies have faith in a prompt economic recovery."

Over 16,000 positions were being offered by companies dealing in electrical appliances, IT, clothing, food and beverages, finance, construction, real estate and foreign trade. However, some university students said they didn't find any good jobs.

"The IT industry doesn't seem strong now," said a student surnamed Zhuang. "I majored in computer science and was hoping to work in an outsourcing firm. But it seems unrealistic now."

Zhang Yang, an organizer of a job fair in Hongkou District, said: "Most jobs offered this year were for salespeople or technicians. The number of auxiliary positions like secretaries and administrative assistants was much lower. But compared to the second half of last year, some companies were offering more positions."

A migrant worker from Jiangsu Province said he easily found a job with a construction company. "They asked me a few things and then told me to begin work in three days," he said. "Looking for job in Shanghai is a bit easier than in some other provinces."

There were also many middle-aged job seekers. A man surnamed Chen who works for a foreign trade company said he was looking for a new job as his company had told workers to take long vacation and he hadn't had any income for several months.


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